March 18

Character Discussions

This category is for the discussion of the various characters in the Destroyermen Series

Earl

RIVER OF BONES

Prologue

(Unedited, from the CEM)

“To the cookpots with any who fall out!” gasped Jash, heaving his burden along with the rest of his warriors. He was a Senior First of One Hundred, now sometimes referred to by the odd-sounding words Taii or Ka’tan, and commanded three hundred of First General Regent Champion Esshk’s New Warriors. The New Warriors were still sometimes derisively called the hatchling host by long-established regents and the elite Hij of Old Sofesshk, which was the First City and old/new capital of the Ghaarrichk’k Empire in Africa. But they’d been schooled from birth in the radical new  ways of the Hunt and were the best equipped, best trained, most lethal warriors the Grik ever made, all for the purpose of this Final Swarm they were about to embark upon. Their mission was to slaughter a most tiresome “worthy prey” once and for all, a prey that had made the Grik prey for the first time since before their racial memory began, and was now threatening the holy city of Sofesshk itself.

Jash knew all this, or most of it, as well as the fact that he owed his rank—probably his very life—to the military reforms of First General Esshk and not, also for the first time in history, to the Celestial Mother or Giver of Life who ruled the empire in name. This was particularly remarkable for a warrior not quite three years old, with precisely zero combat experience and only beginning to sprout the bristly crest of adulthood on his head. Like many his age, raised as he was, it was his intellect that so quickly elevated him to the exalted rank of First of One Hundred, then Senior (Ka’tan), and he was very clever for a Grik not “of the blood.” Under normal circumstances, even if he’d survived the cannibalistic melee of traditional hatchlinghood in the nest, he would’ve risked being arbitrarily sent to the cookpots by some disinterested chooser. If he avoided that, the best he could’ve hoped for was a brief, brutal life as an ordinary Uul warrior or laborer. He owed everything to Esshk, he believed, and it was for the Regent Champion that Jash felt the urgency of (and responsibility for) completing his current task in the allotted time—whether or not he fully understood why his three hundred warriors must carry the inverted weight of a seventy-foot, eighteen ton, wooden galley to the waters of Lake Nalak, west of Sofesshk.

“The warriors tire, Senior,” another First of One Hundred named Seech wheezed beside him, hacking a gobbet of dust-stained mucus on the ground. He didn’t add that they were thirsty as well. He didn’t have to. They’d been carrying the galley all night, down twisty trails in the vine-choked brush south of the lake, from the place it had been hidden from view from above ever since the prey, the . . . enemy . . . discovered the covered slips on the lake. To prevent their destruction, all the galleys—maybe twenty or thirty hundreds; Jash had no idea—were quickly carried ashore or sunk in shallow water. Most were stashed in places it was hoped the enemy flying machines wouldn’t look, but some were even buried. The latter didn’t fare well, quickly rotting in the living soil, but all this was accomplished none too soon, since the enemy returned a few days later with more flying machines and bombed the slips into a roaring inferno. As far as anyone could tell, however, they hadn’t found any galleys, and rarely diverted their efforts from bombing more obvious targets bordering the lake and the Zambezi River.

Jash glanced at Seech, one of only thirty-odd under his command that even had a name. Names were earned by rank or achievement, and only Firsts of Ten, Fifty, or a Hundred had them yet. Looking harder, Jash realized it was dawn at last, because he saw Seech’s tongue lolling from his tooth-studded jaws, moisture around his red eyes made muddy with dust, the young plumage on his tail dragging the ground. The gray armor and tunic over his dun-colored, feathery fur wasn’t stained with sweat, but they’d crossed several streams and the dark dust had stuck. Somehow he’d kept his weapons clean; that was something whipped into them since infancy. There was dust on the shiny-bright barrel of his musket, (called a “garrack” for the loud sound it made, and because the near lipless Grik couldn’t do ‘M’s)–but there wasn’t a speck of rust. Jash expected nothing less. He and Seech had been nestmates, and, according to the old way, would’ve torn each other apart if they could. Prevented from that and raised together, they’d developed a certain . . . fellow-feeling between them that was difficult to define. Jash was smarter and Seech expected him to display wise leadership. Seech was possibly stronger and Jash relied on him to swiftly enforce his commands. Being closer to the ranks, Seech was also expected to have a better feel for what the warriors could endure. The relationship worked, and Jash knew Seech wouldn’t have spoken at all if their warriors didn’t absolutely require a rest.

“Very well,” he panted, then called a halt with a loud, guttural bark. “Hold them here,” he said, “but do not allow them to lay their burden down.” He hesitated. Able to do simple sums, he’d calculated that each of his warriors had been supporting upwards of 120 pounds with their arms and heads since dusk the night before. “They may never lift it again,” he added resignedly. “I will look at the trail ahead.” He nodded at the peak of the rise they’d been working toward.

“As you command,” Seech huffed.

Jash stepped out from under the bow of the galley, arms and legs suddenly rubbery, and staggered several steps before firming his stride. Looking back he saw the graying, raw wood bottom of the galley and wondered how badly it would leak when it touched the water again. For the first time, from his slightly elevated perch, he observed dozens more upturned hulls snaking back the way they’d come like a line of huge grayback beetles drawn to carrion. He resumed his trek to the top of the rise, where he stopped and stared, breathing hard.

Before him, stretching almost as far as he could see, the opposite mountain shore a hazy smudge of darkness against the brightening horizon, was Lake Nalak at last. He’d seen the lake many times, of course, and it always had a few of the great, iron-covered ships lying at anchor or moving smokily about its surface. Now it was packed, and he’d never seen it so densely covered with anything other than the fat, floating, flying creatures that teemed there twice a year. There were iron-covered ships to be sure, more than he’d imagined existed, and most were chuffing columns of dark smoke high in the calm, orangish morning air. But hundreds of galleys were already on the water as well, some rowing east, forty oars on either side flashing in the bright light of the rising sun. It was then that Jash fully grasped the scope of the undertaking of which he was such an insignificant part.

     We made it, he thought. Gauging the distance to the near shore below and conscious that other galleys might soon start stacking up behind his, he scrambled back down the trail. “We are almost there,” he said loudly, voice carrying easily to his entire command, “just over the rise and hardly five more lengths of our burden. As soon as it’s righted, set in the water, and the way cleared for those behind, all may rest!”

Seech looked at him with widened eyes. “Truly?” he asked.

Suppressing irritation that his subordinate might question him, Jash jerked a diagonal nod. “Just so. We will step the mast and emplace the oars, but the galley is liable to sink in the shallows as soon as it is launched. Our warriors can take a short rest then, and refresh themselves in the water by bailing it out. Detail a few to watch for lake monsters while the others frolic.” He considered. “And to guard their weapons, of course.” Not all New Army warriors had garraks yet, and the leaders of those who didn’t weren’t above raiding other units for them. “Choose those who have endured the best for this task and give them names,” Jash decided. “That should inspire others to greater effort in the future.”

“How long will we let the boards soak—and our warriors rest?” Seech asked.

“Two hand-spans of the sun, perhaps slightly more. Less if we must make way for another vessel, of course. The planks should quickly tighten and we will get underway as soon as they do.”

As it turned out, it took almost four hand-spans before the galley was upright on the beach, its mast stepped and the great sail-bearing spar raised to its peak. The whole thing was then pushed down across the sand to the water. As Jash predicted, it rapidly filled and settled to the bulwarks in the murky water, the dry seams open a quarter inch in places. But just as quickly, the porous timbers swelled, and before the next galley crested the rise and began its descent, his slightly rested warriors were already tossing buckets and helmets full of water over the side. Quicker than Jash really expected, “his” galley was afloat, though bailing still, and ready to shove off.

None of his warriors had ever operated a galley, but they’d trained intensively on benches arranged for the purpose, practicing with weighted oars. What’s more, none displayed the terror of the water that came instinctively to others of their kind. There were monsters in Lake Nalak and the Zambezi, but nothing like what lurked in the salty sea and they’d trained in water since they could walk, moving in the shallows and even learning to swim, after a fashion. Mere rivers would not stop the advance of Esshk’s New Army. In any event, the dangers of the water were well-known, even avoidable to an extent, and the warriors quickly adjusted to their new environment as Jash tried to remember the commands regulating their labor. (He’d once crossed the lake in a galley, learning to steer, but never commanded one). Seech was invaluable in this instance. He may not’ve been considered as smart as Jash, but apparently had a better memory. Soon, as the day progressed, the galley was flashing across the water at an astonishing speed as its crew got the hang of working together and Jash relearned the steering commands. He rested the rowers often; they’d already had a long night and day. But they seemed invigorated by their new experience and he made the most of their enthusiasm.

Other galleys darted around them with sometimes more, often less, skill. A few occasionally collided, filling and spilling their crews farther from shore than was likely for them to survive. Jash collected forty or so stranded warriors that kept hold of their garraks. He had no use for the rest. If he hadn’t retained ship-handling commands very well, he could spew other mantras in his sleep, first and foremost being that firepower dominated this New Way of war, and he wouldn’t feed anyone who’d drop his weapon to save himself. Some were saved by other Ka’tans who valued quantity over quality, and when one of these almost crashed his galley into Jash’s, he gave the order to back oars and pull away. The soggy survivors herded below as ballast belonged to him now, and he’d see what they were made of later.

Finally, with no orders to proceed toward the city yet, Jash decided to take his galley ashore and let his warriors get some much-needed sleep. They were heading toward the beach not far from where they’d launched their ship when First of Fifty Naxa, stationed near the bow, cried out and pointed. Jash rushed forward on the walkway between the rowers and stared at the sky. A distant speck was growing, coming their way. Even as he watched, the first became two, then five. Six! Dozens of smoky white streamers lanced into the air, pushing rockets intended to stop the enemy flying machines. They exploded with dull thumps and dirty gray puffs, mostly above and considerably behind the enemy. Jash considered the rockets worse than useless. They occasionally got an enemy machine and probably wounded more, but they did as much damage on the ground as enemy bombs. Still, they couldn’t just let them come and go as they pleased, could they? He snorted.

“All ahead full,” he shouted, and the drum regulating the stroke of the oars picked up the pace. “A quarter left!” he shouted at Seech, standing by the tiller. A “quarter” corresponded to a mark on the deck, as did “half” and “full.” More nuance was required under sail, but under oars, particularly in battle, such increments were considered sufficient. “We will land near those trees,” Jash told Naxa, pointing at the beach. “Have line handlers stand by to go over the side and secure the ship.”

“As you command,” Naxa agreed. Jash trotted back toward the stern, watching the flying machines roar past. If anything could strike terror into his warriors (and him), it was the enemy planes. These six were of the medium size with a single engine, blue on top and white on bottom, marked with a red dot in a white star, surrounded by a darker blue circle. Red and white stripes festooned their tails like colorful plumage. Shaped like a small boat with wings, they were obviously designed to land on water. Rockets no longer pursued them, though they still rose and flashed over the south side of the distant city, above New Sofesshk, where much of their war industry was. About the time he reached Seech’s side, he knew with relief that the warplanes had no interest in his lone galley, but were making for one of the monstrous iron-plated greatships of battle with four tall smoking pipes rising high in the air. Their target was anchored and seemed helpless—but Jash had seen some of the new things they could do. . . .

Three planes went for the greatship, beginning steep dives, while more peeled off after other targets. Dozens of antiair mortars fired amid a great swirl of smoke, but instead of a short-range cloud of small projectiles, each mortar threw a bomb, or “case,” packed with powder and balls. These all exploded nearly simultaneously about half the distance to the diving planes—just as two dark objects dropped from each. To Jash’s satisfaction, the cones of projectiles the mortar shells discharged intersected the paths of two of the planes pulling out of their dive and literally swatted them from the sky. Both fell in the wakes of their bombs, trailing shattered fragments and streamers of ragged fabric. All six bombs hit the sloped iron armor of the greatship, exploding and sending jagged plates spinning into the lake. One plane’s remains clattered against the armor while the other dropped in the water. The third plane, which Jash thought was uninjured, began to trail smoke as it turned away to the southeast. Except for one toppled funnel, the ship seemed little hurt.

“Well,” Jash said, eyes slitted with pleasure as he searched for the other three planes. A column of smoke towered over an armored cruiser about a mile away, but the planes were nowhere in sight. Either they’d all been destroyed or had beat a hasty retreat. Not seeing any more smoky tendrils, he suspected the latter. Still . . . “That worked better than I expected,” he finished.

“Yes,” Seech agreed, troubled. “But some almost certainly flew away from here,” he waved at the sky over the distant city, “and there. I don’t think the enemy was supposed to see us assembling like this,” he added darkly. “Why else did we do all we did, hiding the galleys and carrying them back and forth, if not to trick the prey? Now they have seen. They will know.” He paused. “They will be ready.”

Jash shook his head, staring at the vast numbers of ships and galleys spread across the lake. There were at least ten of the greatships here alone, and they’d demonstrated only what they could do to planes. Their new ship-to-ship batteries were even more impressive. More greatships would be nearer the city and there were probably three tens of cruisers and at least four hundreds of galleys in view. He knew many more had been gathered and hidden at Old Sofesshk because the enemy, for whatever reason, didn’t bomb there. There was no question he was very young and had little experience with such things, but he didn’t think there could’ve ever been so much power assembled in one place before.

Signal flags were breaking out now, punctuated by attention horns repeating the commands of other flags beyond his view. They were probably spaced all the way back to the Palace of Vanished Gods itself. The order had been given, directing the entire swarm to begin moving eastward, toward the city. “They may soon know,” Jash replied, “and they may prepare. But I doubt they will ever be ready for this.”

 



Copyright 2017. All rights reserved.

Posted March 18, 2016 by Taylor Anderson in category "Character Discussions

379 COMMENTS :

  1. By Justin on

    ^ Good to see some perspective from the Grik side of the story… even if none of them will outlive the epilogue.

    Still not sure how even three hundred Uul can portage a bireme, though. They’re not exactly ants.

    Reply
    1. By Lou Schirmer on

      Doesn’t have to be a bireme. It could have just a single bank of oars, which would be a lot simpler to build, especially if you’re expecting lots of losses. It’s 70′ long & weighs 18 tons & built to carry 300 Grik. Say 10′ of bow & 10′ of stern, that leaves 50′ for oars. At 5′ between oars, you get 10-12 per side. You might get 3-4 Grik on an oar, so 60-96 rowers at a time, letting the rest…well, rest. She’s probably pretty beamy to hold that many, even with a ballast hold. Sounds kind of like a Viking longship.

      Reply
      1. By Taylor Anderson on

        You’re close with the longship–sort of, in some ways…

        Reply
      2. By donald johnson on

        // It’s 70′ long & weighs 18 tons & built to carry 300 Grik.//
        that could be portaged easy 150 lb per grik and it could weigh Lbs or 45000 or 22.5 tones and still be carried. I think you have too mayt grik per boat at 70 feet boat needs to be 100 ft long at least.

        Reply
        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          I took the specs & # of Grik from Taylor’s excerpt above. I think it would depend on the beam & draft as well. We’ll probably know more when the book finally comes out.

          Reply
    2. By Taylor Anderson on

      What makes you think they won’t survive the epilogue?

      Reply
      1. By Matt White on

        I think it’s best said in the words of Kipling, for we have the machine gun and they do not.

        Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Form squares. You don’t need to reload a pike.

        1. By Lou Schirmer on

          I think the Union’s going have a busy time with the “new ship-to-ship batteries” & the AA mortars firing exploding case. As far as the army in galleys, that’s a numbers game. Some are bound to get through even in a worse case scenario for them. If the cruisers & BBs take on the Santy Cat & any escorts she has, they’re not going to have much time to pay attention to the galleys. For that matter, the galleys may attempt to board during the action. This has the makings of a blood bath.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            “mortars firing exploding case. ”

            …Shrapnel. This is called “shrapnel”. Seriously, guys, I ‘m really puzzled why you are trying to avoid the “sh”-word.

          2. By Lou Schirmer on

            I’m just going by the narrative.
            //each mortar threw a bomb, or “case,” packed with powder and balls. These all exploded nearly simultaneously about half the distance to the diving planes//
            They threw a “case” that “exploded”, hence exploding case rounds aka shrapnel rounds.

          3. By Paul Nunes on

            Alexey.
            Shrapnel for Americans means the individual fragment that cause wounds.

            Exploding case is the type of shell fired that fragments into splinters and pre fragmented shrapnel.

            Calling it a shrapnel bomb is British/French definition and still really slang.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Lou, the initial shrapnel rounds were exactly cases filled with bullets & bursting charge.

          5. By Taylor Anderson on

            True Alexey, but “over here” shrapnel was more commonly used to describe the shell or “case” fragments after they burst. The terms “spherical case” or “shell” lingered a long time for the actual projectiles.

        2. By Justin on

          That, and how random grunts in this particular genre (Weber/Flint/Turtledove/Conroy/etc) usually don’t outlive the book they’re introduced in.

          Either they’re killed in the same chapter (usually in order to showcase/reveal the new wonder weapon), or they’re killed near the end (to show over the course of the story how the enemy situation’s deteriorated). Looking forward to a trope subversion.

          Reply
          1. By Taylor Anderson on

            Trope. I honestly didn’t know what that word meant until I saw a website recounting all the “tropes” I engage in (or avoid) from time to time. (Kind of a neat sight, and I get the impression whoever monitors and updates the D-Men section must get a kick out of the story). Anyway, “trope” is actually a pretty good word, more comprehensive than “stereotype.” The thing is, a lot of stereotypical characters (at least on the surface, at a glance) are NECESSARY to authenticity. At the beginning, in “Into the Storm,” nearly every character on Walker is a “stereotype” when you meet them, AS THEY WOULD BE if you stepped aboard an Asiatic Fleet 4-stacker and met its crew in 1942. As readers get to know them, however, they realize that there is depth to the characters–just like there would be to the real people they are based upon.
            I did this on purpose. I’ve “known” every member of Walker’s crew in my life, though most are composites, and I bet most of you have “known” them too. That’s one reason they resonate with many people. I don’t know how many times I hear “I know that guy!” from service men and women.
            One exception to this is that not many people REALLY “know” Silva, however. Most would thank God they didn’t. Some would thank God they do. I do.

            As to the “redshirt” issue, yeah, I’ve done that a time or two, though I honestly don’t “set out” to. Saansa-Belkaa was probably the most recent example. The thing is, there had to be a POV perspective in that plane and it would be utterly unrealistic if Ben–or even Shirley–flew the mission. Most importantly, I didn’t even “plan” her doom! I’d say she had a better than even chance of survival, and the P-40 “something” being used again, until she decided to hang around awhile and shoot the joint up. It wasn’t even an unreasonable decision, based on what she knew, but in retrospect, she should’ve beat feet. In nearly every single instance in which a named character, particularly a “featured” character has been lost, it just . . . happened. I don’t roll dice or try to shock, or kill characters specifically to heighten drama. Sometimes they are lost because it would simply be impossible for them to survive whatever they’ve gotten themselves into, based on what they face. Most often, as in real life, it’s because they DO something that gets them killed–based on the deeper, “sub-stereotypical” personality they’ve exhibited over time. For example: I didn’t set out to kill Chief Gray. Period. It just . . . happened. I know that sounds weird, but it’s true. If you’ll recall the circumstances, however, you will realize that faced with that situation, the man you had all come to know as Chief Gray did EXACTLY what he would’ve done.

            Sorry for the dissertation, but I never build characters just to waste them–even Grik characters. I think Halik proved that–so far. On the other hand, if I do have a “formula,” it’s that “plans”–with a very few exceptions, Zanzibar being one–“always go in the crapper.” This has been my personal, lifelong experience. :) I always know pretty much what is going to happen when I begin each installment, but I don’t always set out knowing exactly HOW it will. And again, as in real life, very unexpected things–to me and everyone else–can happen when the wheels come off.

            So . . . Will Jash or Naxa or Seech survive the battle they’re clearly destined to participate in, based on the prologue snippet? Read the rest and find out. Will any of them–or anyone yet named–survive the war? Honestly? I have no idea. If I do croak ’em, however, it won’t be to fulfill a trope or make anybody cry, (though I’ve got misty-eyed a time or two myself, writing certain things), but it’ll be because they were doing what they do and they got hit–or they slipped on the slime in the crew’s head and broke their neck.

          2. By Justin on

            Thanks. Not hating (and agreeing entirely in that tropes aren’t always bad); just very, very, very used to disposable characters.

            For example: “Caporal Robichard had been a math teacher years before being conscripted into the Armee du Afrique, he really didn’t want to be here in a new world sweating his balls off in the Egyptian desert, but his unit had been ordered to stop the new Union tanks before – MERDE! (exposition about scary tanks)… then the world went white and he knew no more.”

            Pretty sure Safehold has about a half-dozen of these poor sods every book. Good to know that Jash et all will be written much better.

          3. By Taylor Anderson on

            Yeah, I get it–and agree with you on various levels, Justin. Don’t get me wrong, lots of “names” get croaked all the time, but people do have names and when they’re referenced–particularly somebody in charge of something–it’s not wrong to have a contextual backstory for why it matters, or anybody cares–but I’m NOT big on getting readers attached to somebody just to rub them out. I have plenty of character “acquaintances” already in the story to draw on. As stated many times, they’re there so when it’s required that they “step up,” they’re not just coming out of nowhere. Sometimes they DO die, of course . . . but sometimes they become generals or rise to command armies and ships.

          4. By Steve Moore on

            Sort of like gardening; you like broccoli, a lot come up, but then you have to weed some out so the others develop more fully. Life isn’t a bowl of cherries; its, well… life. And death. Success, and failure. Love, and loss. Wouldn’t surprise me if Risa gets the hook soon, to bring Silva and Pam together.

          5. By Charles Simpson on

            You have the choice between fake immortal characters, nameless dead, or red shirting new characters. Note the Grik don’t bother naming red shirts, there are more Uhl where they cane from 😉 So not all characters introduced survive the book, and no character is immortal. In this snippet we learn something about the young Grik of the hatchling host, self-awareness can be a function of education not just physical maturity among the Grik. I suggested Taylor include this snippet it has some action in it to wet the appetite, he had to get permission from his publisher to share, and as you follow their further adventures in River of Bones you will learn something about the Grik of the Hatchling Host. They are not the Grik we first met.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            Charles Simpson, agreed completely.

  2. By donald j johnson on

    Ever wondered where they get the Freon to recharge the coca cola machine.
    Looking at the artwork above I can’t help but think that He is telling them to protect it with their lives cause they can be replaced and it can’t

    Reply
      1. By William Curry on

        Ammonia was rarely used in small units. Ammonia requires high pressure compressors and steel pipe as it is not compatible with cuprous metals. At that time the most likely refrigerant for domestic or light commercial unit would have been sulfur dioxide. Possibly methylene chloride (R-40) or methyl chloride (R-30). R-12 is a possibility as it was being phased in in the late 30’s. R-11 used in centrifugal chillers is an intermediate step in the production of R-12. At atmospheric pressure R-11 boils at 74.8F. It and R-113, r-114 were often used as dry cleaning solvents. We used R-11 to clean tools and parts as well to get the grease and oil out of clothing. The quickest way to cool a drink was to drop it into a bucket of R-11, watch it boil and fish it out with a pair of pliers. That would be illegal now.

        Reply
      2. By William Curry on

        A lot of those types of drink coolers were flooded with water which was chilled by the refrigerant unit. The drinks were set in the pool of water to cool. The bottom of the pool was the evaporator. In this case the water would have been the secondary refrigerant.

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          I remember the one at the gas station I went to on way to school in 1953 and yes it was a bool of water kept cold somehow. 4 cents for the coke and 3 cents bottle deposit. that would be she same as $1.oo for the coke and 75 Cent deposit today. well it ss a buck for the coke but deposit is only a dime.

          Reply
        1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

          Actually, Don, I said Ammonia–because that’s what cooled a unit that belonged to a guy I knew out in Baird a long time ago. I guess it could be Sulfur Dioxide or Methyl Formate. But the big freezer on deck uses Ammonia.

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            A big freezer would have probably been ammonia on ship in the late 30’s.

        2. By donald johnson on

          Has anyone here impressed their grand-kids by putting some freeze-mist in a small plastic bag and had it boil when you placed it in their or your hand. It is a very impressive demo for a young kid. Another one is to put about 10cc of water in a partially capped 2 liter bottle and put it in the microwave for 10-15 seconds to get it to boil. Then you cap tightly and watch it collapse completely. but be sure to explain to them to not do it by themselves because they might get burned.

          Reply
          1. By William Curry on

            We used to destroy used chemical drums and low pressure refrigerate drums (R-11 and R-113), so they could be disposed of as scrap rather than hazardous waste, by hook up a large vacuum pump to them, pulling a vacuum on them until atmospheric pressure caused them to collapse. The vapor in the 2 liter bottle cools and produces a partial vacuum in the bottle, and the pressure of the atmosphere collapses it. We had to use vacuum breakers on steam utilizing equipment to prevent things like kettles and coils from doing the same thing. The easiest vacuum breaker was a swing check valve with the inlet side open to the atmosphere. The steam pressure in the vessel held it shut and when it dropped below atmospheric, it would open and break the vacuum.

  3. By Justin on

    Consider the role of Grik auxiliaries fighting with the Allies. And the very real possibility of a peace, even an alliance, with the Grik Empire.

    It could very well come to pass that not only are Grik armies fighting on the Allied side, but also that enlisted Grik are serving directly in the Union/Republic military. I know the Cats and humans are professionals (most of them), but would most of them accept working with their former enemies… maybe even taking orders from them?

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      Peace probably, but alliance… IMHO, you are going too far, suggesting an alliance in foreseeable future. With all respect, but the quantity of bad blood between Grik and Union are far too big to just forget it. Only the literal threat to their common existence could make them work together.

      Reply
      1. By Charles Simpson on

        Duh! The League trying to get them to destroy each other IE. a //literal threat to their common existence could make them work together.//

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          With all respect, its just a politic – playing your enemies agains each other. And League do nothing bad against Grik, frankly. So, I really doubt that any major fraction of Grik empire would be eager to rally for Union against them.

          Reply
        2. By Charles Simpson on

          Short term the League is doing the Grik a favor. and has not attacked the Grik directly as far as we know, but they don’t want a major land military power that close to them. Besides the Celestial Mother is a teenager under the thumb of two handlers the Chooser and Esshk you don’t have rebellious youth in Mother Russia?

          Reply
        3. By Justin on

          Right. It’s not going to happen overnight, but the series has an ongoing theme of sworn enemies deciding to team up against a larger threat (and eventually learning to accept each other).

          Reply
      2. By Steve Moore on

        Well, you’ve got an ‘alliance’ of sorts with Halik and Niwa, a truce between the Allies and Halik, so a more formal arrangement could be possible, but mixed formations… a pipe dream, I think. Too many ‘cultural’ differences.

        What I could see is an arrangement with Halik to provide security to the Northwest, and possibly the ‘Navy Clan’ Griks to provide coastal security reinforcement at the Cape. I’d keep them out of the Zambezi campaign, just too confusing. Or send the crews north to Halik as artillerymen or Red Sea,Persian Gulf support vessel crews. Fit the Grik cruisers and battleshps with some AAA. Give Halik some of the leftover tugs and barges as well.

        Reply
        1. By Charles Simpson on

          Devil’s Due SPOILER WARNING!!!

          You have not read Devil’s Due but the North Borno fights with the Lemurians in Zanzabar.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Technically that’s the Khonashi, not the Grik.

            As for mixed formations, we’ve already got Geerki, Pokey, and miscellaneous Grik redshirts. All the Union needs to do is make them official servicemen (since they don’t do retainers).

          2. By Steve Moore on

            Right now it’s just a few Griks like pokey, but you’ve got the group captured on Zanzibar for cleanup duties. Question is, what do you do with them? This may sound like too bloodthirsty an idea for the series, but give them back their personal weapons and send them after the Grik in the north. Keeps them busy for now… the ships crews are going to be isolated and more easily handled.

    2. By donald j johnson on

      The young grik of fighting age are not trained to do anything except obey orders. Most think of them as having intelligence and knowledge like a trained human soldier. This is not the case with the common grik soldier. They are the equivalent of a human 3 year old in mental abilities. The officers are those that were separated early and do have some training but still only in fighting knowledge. The ull are the ones that will have the training to be able to differentiate between old enemy and old enemy now friend. The ull also will be separated into factions and these are the ones that will need to be convinced that being a friend is better than being an enemy, or at least less expensive in the long term.

      I am not sure what will happen to the 3 squadrons of jap fighters but I suspect that most who escaped did not go to the grik but instead ran to the league. There were still most likely a few league personal on the base who knew where the league base of operations on the east coast of Africa is and headed there with the japs following them.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        That could be true, Don; don’t think anyone brought that up, and the LOT would probably welcome any extra planes, even (to them) obsolete ones.

        Esshk recognized that his “New Grik” warriors are also potentially rebellious, hence his hope that they all get killed off so they can go back to the more subservient Uul of the past. Any remaining would have to be ‘elevated’ to Hij to keep them out of the rank-and-file as potential rebel leaders (Alexey, maybe they would be the first ‘Red’ Grik)

        Reply
  4. By Paul Smith on

    //They are going to have to break up the stuff in Zanzibar simply to prevent the Griks from getting it.//
    I’d keep Zanzibar, it’s relatively safe (once you get ride of the grik on the island), multiple airfields, factories, repair yards, ICE houses, weapon shops and it’s closer to africa for staging raids from Sofesshk to the Arabian Peninsula.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      I’m afraid that boat has come and gone; the ending of Devil’s Due has them salvaging what they can and destroying everything else, the plan being to leave for good.

      Reply
      1. By donald j johnson on

        The safest thing is what they have done. They cannot afford to have any more area’s to protect without real food cause due to the man/cat power required to protect any new area’s near combat probable sites. You know that the Grik will come back in strength as long as anything is there so absolute destruction is necessary to prevent them from using the area. Once they do comeback they will be required to rebuild the entire infrastructure of the island and they will not be able to afford to due this anytime soon.

        Reply
      2. By Charles Simpson on

        There is a substantial Grik force still in the north of Zanzabar so the alliance will take what they can and junk the rest. They did capture the Grik workers who now consider themselves American Navy Clan. Hopefully a few Torpedo/bombers under construction and be completed to give the alliance some for the upcoming fight on the Zambezi. The torpedo/bomber factory and Areal torpedo factory to keep them in Torpedoes would be my priority.

        Reply
  5. By Steve Moore on

    Hope we’ll see more of Halik & Niwa in the next book. Think they have the potential to become, maybe not allies, but “Third Way” partners in trade and in cooperation. The few Grik that came over to the Allies (and survived) in DD might be the basis of a new ‘clan’ led by H’Jeerki. Having them as a flanking force to any LOT land advance south in coming years would be useful, even if limited to mobile, SAS-style attacks.

    Having Muriname and his 3 squadrons would be useful as well. Wonder if they were just the Japanese pilots, or did some of the Grik pilots escape as well? Imagine Halik having a small aerial scout detachment to use; the planes were built for rough-field use, and could be shared with (or assigned to) Alliance forces.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Left out the “The new clan could work as go-betweens for the Czechs and Halik.” Computer has a new habit of deleting the last sentence written when a secret combination of keys is pressed.

      Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        //Computer has a new habit of deleting the last sentence written when a secret combination is pressed.//

        yes, there are many strange things that happen when you press the CTRL key and a number of other keys,
        CTRL+A Select All Add Note Bookmark by Value*
        CTRL+B Submit Batch File Display Note Rebase Date column
        CTRL+C Copy Change Case Select Column*
        CTRL+D Clear All Data
        CTRL+E Update Data and Exit* Excel Wizard
        CTRL+F Find Reorder Levels* Calculate Factor*
        CTRL+G Goto Line/Cell
        CTRL+H Next Error Message Previous Error Message
        CTRL+I Insert row before current row* Insert multiple rows*
        CTRL+J Insert row after current row*
        CTRL+K Submit Clipboard Submit to current line Conditional Format*
        CTRL+L Submit Line DDE Link* Edit Factor Levels*
        CTRL+M Submit Selection/Run Analysis* Submit from current line Move Column*
        CTRL+N Open New Text Window
        CTRL+O Open File Reorder Columns*
        CTRL+P Print Protect Column*
        CTRL+Q (none) Toggle Selection of Cell
        CTRL+R Replace Repeat Line Select Row*
        CTRL+S Save File Save File As
        CTRL+T Find Next Text Split* Temporary Missing Value*
        CTRL+U Update Sheet* Allow AutoUpdate*
        CTRL+V Paste
        CTRL+W Submit Window Recycle Window Default Column Widths*
        CTRL+X Cut
        CTRL+Y Redo
        CTRL+Z Undo
        CTRL+Del Delete
        ALT+N Copy Column Names* Paste Column Names*
        ALT+T Combine Text*
        ALT+V Paste Special
        CTRL+0 Restrict Expression*
        CTRL+1 Restrict on Cell*
        CTRL+2 Restrict No Missing values*
        CTRL+3 Restrict Missing Values*
        CTRL+4 Reverse Restriction*
        CTRL+5 Restrict Selection*
        CTRL+6 Restrict Selected rows added to Excluded*
        CTRL+7 Restrict Selected rows removed from Excluded*
        CTRL+8 Restrict UnSelected rows as Excluded*
        CTRL+9 Restrict UnSelected rows added to Excluded*
        CTRL+0 Restrict UnSelected rows removed from Excluded*
        CTRL+] Moves the cursor to next brace or matching statement

        Reply
    2. By Charles Simpson on

      Trying to out guess Taylor Anderson is difficult. I see having Muriname having a role, and perhaps Halick and/or Niwa, but not until the Grand Swarm is defeated. Halick and Niwa will have to be brought in by the alliance as walking would take months.

      Muriname is important because some of the aircraft have radios and may be able to contact the alliance to arrange a truce and peace talks.

      Reply
        1. By Paul Smith on

          maybe all could have receivers, probably only jap planes would have transmitters.

          Reply
          1. By Paul Smith on

            just wondering what a headset for a grik would look like…..

    3. By donald johnson on

      can you imagine the damage that could be caused by SMART griks in smart commando/SAS type attacks. I Halik being smart and offering some of his smart troops to both sides for training then using them agains whichever side he determines is the greater enemy. he seems to operate on the the enemy of my friend is my enemy but my friend might not really be my friend

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Agree, he has been on the receiving end of too many of the Czechs’ attacks. And the Japanese, at the beginning of WW2, more often than not did not do the ‘conventional (European)’ or expected attacks, so Niwa would probably think the same thing. Asymmetrical warfare is often the best approach when your opponent (hopefully the LOT or their allies) has the edge in equipment.

        Speaking of light forces, hopefully Taylor won’t load the Raiders down with too much more new technology; personally, I think the tanks are better suited for the RRP. Yes, the Japanese used tanks in Malaya and frightened the bejesus out of the Brit’s colonial troops, but limiting tanks’ mobility is not a good thing.

        Ditto for the Maroons; although they’d fight hard from fixed defenses, I think they’d be better suited working with the Sherr-ee shooting from behind rocks and trees, like colonial militia did to the Brits on their way home from Lexington & Concord (and Russian partisans in WW2). No better way to confuse an army learning to follow fixed orders and organized attacks.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Not necessarily the Raiders, but definitely the Marines – tanks have their role in amphibious warfare (D-Day, Peleliu, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, etc), to say nothing of manoeuvre warfare in Africa and garrison force duty. So a proper medium tank should be on the to-do list.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Cancel last. Brain is apparently at one-third speed today.

          2. By Steve Moore on

            We all have days. But look on the bright side; June 2018 is less than a year away. Lou will have time to design the seep-powered ramjet, the next iteration of a light cruiser class, and maybe even an LVT for the Raiders!

          3. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Speaking of jets, there might be a way (eventually) to make Union flying boats relevant again//

            Yeah, in 1950s and with industrial & scientific power of USA. Or USSR:

            http://testpilot.ru/russia/beriev/be/10/img/be10-4.jpg

            With the Alliance capabilities, they could build something like that… not very soon.

          4. By Steve Moore on

            I think eventually flying boats will become a secondary design, still useful for flying to undeveloped areas, but flights between developed areas will eventually be taken over by land-based transports like the DC-3 or Stal. Faster, more efficient and parallels the need for a land based 4-engine bomber.

            Of course, to build all those airfields, they’ll need .battalions of CG’s… Construction Griks

          5. By donald j johnson on

            Well if you’re going to talk about jet seaplanes you have to realize and remember that the USSR built the only supersonic jet seaplane bombmer. Yes it will and yes it actually did fly supersonic a few times but as a bomber it would determine to be a failure because it didn’t have the range it needed from what I understand. I don’t remember what it was called but I suspect there are certain parties here that know all about it.

          6. By Paul Smith on

            if they can get good cooling, put one of the radials from the P1 in the tank for a power source. the Sherman used a radial, so too the M18, which is one of the fastest tanks we’ve ever built. you can have relatively thin armor like the M18, with overhead protection, of course! Two versions, one like M18, direct fire & one like M7 Priest with a howitzer for stand off, indirect fire.

          7. By Justin on

            At last check, the current “turtle” tanks are using Fleashooter radials; that’s why there’s only four of them, because it was all the engines they could spare. Muriname’s 380hp engines should get them to M4 levels of performance.

            Since tank turrets don’t appear to be happening anytime soon though, the StuG might be a better benchmark than the Wolverine – one assault gun model, one assault howitzer model.

  6. By Justin on

    Upon rereading – especially now we’ve had a big character culling – it seems that we’re likely to see a lot more of Fukui… what was he in charge of again?

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Annoying Kurokawa? No, comm, I think. Kind of a waste to send him to the Shogunate, his talents would be better employed by the RRP, or Miyata.

      Reply
      1. By donald j johnson on

        To be honest it is my feeling that we will see a lot more Japanese doing a lot to help the alliance to make up for kurokawa. I think they were more afraid of him than anyone else and as he was the official leader appointed by the emperor of Japan, that is the only reason that he was being followed

        Reply
        1. By Steve Moore on

          Heck, even KK wanted to come over at the end. He did turn over a new leaf, though…

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            I see what you did there…

            It’ll probably be on a case-by-case basis. Though most techs will probably stay – I suspect that you could get engineers to join the Dominion, so long as there’s an interesting project to work on.

          2. By Charles Simpson on

            HK it was Hisashi Kurokawa. and no he schemed to get off the hook not be a member of the Grand Alliance, Sandra killed him not trusting her husband to do it.

            As to Lieutenant Fukui I imagine he will be instrumental in contacting General of the Skies Hideki Muriname and through him the Grik to arrange peace talks after the swarm is defeated.

          3. By Steve Moore on

            yeah, I know it was Hisashi but shorthand.

            It seems like kinda a waste to bust up the industrial center on Zanzibar and scatter their talents; there’s no lingering animosity issues with the RRP

          4. By donald j johnson on

            They are going to have to break up the stuff in Zanzibar simply to prevent the Griks from getting it. Although there may not be direct animosity there will always be individuals with lingering animosity that will not want to help those will have to go to the New Japan or whatever they call it. Those that are willing to help and are capable of providing help will most likely be split up amongst all the manufacturing facilities on a random basis to prevent tensions from building up by keeping them all in one place

          5. By Charles Simpson on

            I got the impression they are taking what they can and destroying any thing they can’t take. I got the impression most wanted to go to the Shoganate of Japan.

          6. By Justin on

            You could say Kurokawa was putting down roots in Zanzibar…

            I don’t suppose the Union will convince any of Amagi’s gunner to get back on Savoie? Shame, they need more than just Gunny Horn to train the new crew.

          7. By Steve Moore on

            Dead or alive, Kurokawa’s still dangerous. An apt fate for him, though, consumed by another predator. Still think the flamethrower cart should come to visit him, although some of the Mi-Annakaa might feel it sacreligious. My thoughts would be to make him into a cinder block and drop him over the side.

          8. By donald johnson on

            i like the idea of him living for a week or two in extreme pain as the kudzo plant sends its tendrils throughout hi. Of course he is not able to move even a finger!

  7. By Steve Moore on

    Wonder who the Japanese will accept to end their own ‘dame’ famine. Eurasian women from the RRP? Impie gals? Women from the NUS? They certainly appeared to get revved up by Sandra and Diania; racial purity didn’t seem to be an issue.

    If the Kaiser’s smart, and he appears to be, he’d make the Japanese an offer. There’s no record of conflict between the two, and the Mi-Anaaka are a hell of a lot easier to work with than the Grik.

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      Have you ever seen a guy that was so disturbed by racial impurity that he would refrain because his ideas of racial purity would be disturbed.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Japanese soldiers during Pacific War, unfortunately, weren’t concered a bit about the race of womens they raped.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Keep in mind that it was the Army doing the raping; the Navy fought the war (mostly) clean.

          Reply
      2. By Steve Moore on

        Yeah, but you’d think that they’d be looking beyond the end of their willy and realize that they’re stuck in this world. And remember, they’re on the LOSING side, so the first rape would probably be the last. Blas’ assailant didn’t fare so well.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Actually hard to say, considering the Japanese psychology…

          Reply
    2. By Charles Simpson on

      Basically there is no way to get Japanese girls, so they will have to take what they can get. Culturally the IMPIE girls are probably closest to the Japanese.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        “Closest” being a relative term – the most they have in common is that their ancestors shared an ocean.

        Reply
      2. By Steve Moore on

        Dunno, most of those Impie girls don’t appear to be too dutiful,,,

        Reply
  8. By Justin on

    Now that everybody seems to be caught up at least to Chapter 7, exactly what’s going to happen with the Grik breeding female in Liberty City? The “Puppet Queen Celestial Mother” option seems a bit too obvious…

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      Jeez, the Griks with their own ‘dames’ famine…. wonder if she’ll be as popular as the Dutch nanny from S-19?

      Reply
  9. By Logan Meyers on

    So one big thing I was thinking about that the Zanzibar conflict and the end of Kurokawa’s forces will cause is the major increase of power in the Shogunate of Yokohama. They already have a lot of Japanese so far captured from earlier in the war and those from the other force. With so many people from old earth in place the nation should be seeing a major boost in its economic and military prowess especially if some impie girls are being diverted their way. They can become a major player and begin developing their own weapons and ideas that can greatly help the allies. Even if they are given the current base the allies are using they can improve it in ways the red of the alliance wont think of. I believe with the addition of women and being in their homeland which is part of the great alliance and getting the benefits and assistance from the rest of their once enemies the Japanese will work with a will to finally try to prove their honor in real fights and distance themselves from Kurokawa.

    If manufactories can be built there and they can begin mining natural resources I think a little seen corner of the alliance could become a major player and heart of new kinds of innovations. In the future I can see forces from the Shogunate marching with allied troops or in the air, hopefully they can even begin producing ships to help.

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      Their main problem is the lack of population… As far as I understood, the Shogunate is relatively small union of tribes and villages. There are probably no more than a several hundred thousand lemurians, shogunate-affilated, as best. So, low population – little workforce. And Japanese islands, aren’t actually known for being resource-rich.

      So, the more probable course would be that Shogunate would lend his human personnel as technical & military advisors.

      //They can become a major player and begin developing their own weapons and ideas that can greatly help the allies. //

      Frankly, I doubt that they would. The majority of Japanese Shogunate population is hardly an Alliance-sympatizers. Kurokawa or not, but the Alliance fought them and killed a lot of their comrades – and many of them still consider themselves in war with Americans, and American-led Alliance would hardly be among their favourites.

      So, IMHO, the Shogunate wouldn’t be the “actual” member of Alliance, both because of lack of manpower, and general disapproval of Japanese population. More or less friendly toward the Alliance, yes. But formal member? Hardly.

      Reply
      1. By Steve Moore on

        Gleaning bits and pieces here and there, appears that DD contains MAJOR events. Can’t wait to go detecting tonight for an electronic version, but today is tractor day, already been to the JD dealer. Nothing runs like a Deere, until it breaks down when you go to use it, and is a critical part you don’t keep in consumable store. Don’t have a machine shop like Walker or Mahan.

        With so many ‘old world’ Japanese in the Shogunate, I’d be surprised if they didn’t try to colonize the Chinese or Siberian coastal areas. Might still be a few Czech or Lemurians there, and I’d bet that Dalbec could provide a few volunteers to help explore. The more that populations intermingle, the less we’ll see of intense single-tribe fascism. JMHO.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Er… they have less than three hundreds of Japanese at all. With little human females. And their lemurians also are in short supply. IMHO, but for Shogunate the most immediate course of action would be to colonize the Japan islands…

          P.S. Hey! Don’t touch Siberia! :) I still hope for the Soviet transfer on Far East)

          Reply
          1. By Matt on

            A Soviet crossover would be really interesting. While the US and USSR were technically allies in WW2 it wasn’t exactly an easy alliance and it’s already clear many of the destroyermen are hostile to communism. That would breed some interesting interactions. It doesn’t have to be Soviet either. Could be tzarist or something else entirely depending on which world they come from. I think it would be cool to see something way out of left field like maybe a republican Russia, say they had something like the French revolution before Marx wrote his manifesto, or maybe a completely foreign type of government like some weird modern adaptation of the Mongol Kahn system that evolved from a different string of events during the mongol conquests. Russia is a huge place with a really cool and varied history who knows what could have happened?

          2. By Steve Moore on

            ‘Many’… as compared to Americans in the Union. OK, maybe not colonize, but establish trade outposts for resources. Closer than the North American west coast, Austraal or Indiaa.

            As for transfers, how about transfers from a Russian Alaska or West Coast?

          3. By Justin on

            Who knows, they might even be Rus’, not “Russians” as we know them.

          4. By Logan Meyers on

            Well that’s a lot compared to the remaining destroyermen and if they can begin trying to send some envoy to the impies and try to promote themselves I can see them getting more women which I’m sure is on everyone’s mind. Plus if they dont want to wallow as a minor nation they will need to begin to seek assistance from the alliance. If they sent advisors they would want resources and help in construction in return. I was a bit quick to jump to being a major nation but they can have a presence and increase their population steadily. There is a lot of knowledge there and the more trade and positive interaction with the allies will slowly wear down their hate and distrust of Americans. As more of them find themselves beside the allies I combat I’m sure things will change and if any Grik can survive that far north they might be a place for the prisoners to move as well but that’s the most unlikely part of my random thoughts since I don’t know how the general population feels about the more intelligent Grik they had on zanzibar…though the leaders and those working directly with them did seem to take pride in their pilots at least. This is just a big area to speculate since they have the largest population of modern humans this side of the league unless there’s more destroyermen than I thought.

          5. By Steve Moore on

            You know, just struck me that if the Doms go down next, the temporary hiatus of young women ‘immigrating’ to the Empire is going to become permanent, as mamas will no longer fear for their daughter’s lives and will keep them home. Wonder if they’ll let them go to an expanding St Francis or the USN base at San Diego?

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            //A Soviet crossover would be really interesting. While the US and USSR were technically allies in WW2 it wasn’t exactly an easy alliance and it’s already clear many of the destroyermen are hostile to communism. That would breed some interesting interactions. //

            Matt, that’s exactly why I’m advocating the Sovier transfer (we usually use therm “transfer” to describe the transition from one world to another). This could be pretty interesting in therms of interactions. And I firmly believe that mr. Anderson is perfectly capable to write the Soviet characters right.

            (Which is, frankly, a problem for seems to be a lot of western authors. :( I read a quite lot of alternate history books, where is seems that authors were competing for the “McCarthy prize for Most Grotesque Communist Representation Ever”.)

          7. By Matt on

            I definitely think it would be cool and I agree Taylor does a great job with representing different groups without falling into stereotype. Have you read any Harry Turtledove? I thought the way the Soviet characters were protrayed in his wordlwar and colonization series was well done.

          8. By Alexey Shiro on

            Yes, I read Turtledove; must admit, that his representation (while not flawless) is one of the best)

          9. By Chris on

            But remember, their world is in an ice age. Assuming that the glaciers have an extent roughly equivalent to what we had at the last ice age most of Siberia should be covered with glaciers.

          10. By donald johnson on

            if it were a full blown ice-age the sea levels will be 300 feet lower than they are in our world so coastlines will be radically different and the entire area where ready arrived would have been 200 feet above sea level. Use google earth to see the depths around Singapore and Balakan. to really understand the problem.

          11. By Alexey Shiro on

            //But remember, their world is in an ice age. Assuming that the glaciers have an extent roughly equivalent to what we had at the last ice age most of Siberia should be covered with glaciers.//

            Only partially. The rest is so-called mammoth steppe; actually, quite good ecosystem to live and build civilization.

          12. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Agreed Alexey and Donald. Remember, it is–as Courtney proposes early on–a “mild” ice age. Probably the beginning or tail end of a larger event, or even a “standalone>’ There were several of those. But even as described, it is clearly not a “major” ice age covering the majority of the continents. As also pointed out, many of the waterways they have traversed would be unpassable in that case and the Malay Barrier would be even more formidable!

          13. By Justin on

            Sure, but the Torres Strait is above water, and Fiji is its own continent – that implies at least 7 metres’ worth of sea level change.

          14. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            That’s probably about right, Justin. There are other factors to consider as well, that may seem somewhat arbitrary, but the very geological evolution of the earth is proceeding at a somewhat altered pace due to the . . . different traumatic influences. As WE know, the Chixilub Impact did not occur, but others events have taken place, lighting different tectonic, volcanic, evolutionary and climatological fuses.

          15. By donald j johnson on

            And maybe the event did take place and hit the isthmus instead of the Gulf of Mexico thereby leaving a crater for a Passage

          16. By Lou Schirmer on

            It would have been a smaller impact though for it to not cause a mass extinction. Maybe it hit another asteroid on the way in & either broke up with just a smaller piece hitting or knocking the smaller asteroid into an impact.

            Or the Pass of Fire could be a result of an earthquake or super volcano or both. Things are not all in the same place as our world & the fault lines could be slightly off. I’m leaning towards the volcano theory, maybe augmented by a fault line, why else would they call it El Paso del Fuego?

          17. By donald j johnson on

            A supervolcano would not be that much of a pass because they typically blow a lot less and by the way they are as much of a mass extinction as the meteorites and at least in the local area

          18. By Lou Schirmer on

            The Toba super volcano in Indonesia is about 100×30 kilometers. The Panama canal is just under 80 kilometers, so technically, it could have made a pass there & been widened out by the tidal current flow & more eruptions. Can’t really tell from the maps as to precisely where the Pass is though, so hard to tell whether a super volcano would do it. One augmented by a local earthquake fault line might do the trick though.

            You’re right about the local extinctions. There’s a theory being investigated as to whether the Toba eruption almost wiped us (humans) out 74,000 years ago.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toba_catastrophe_theory

          19. By Justin on

            Probably just different plate tectonics – North and South America are drifting apart instead of closer together. It explains the giant volcano too.

          20. By donald j johnson on

            If there is a Soviet transfer it will probably be after the Soviets invade Manchuria in 1945 and I believe that that is a year away at least so it won’t happen very soon

      2. By Steve Moore on

        Maybe a better idea is move any Japanese that want to stay down to Grik City, bring over some ‘dames’ from the RRP, and start developing Madagascar with machinery and resources shipped out of Songze. Fills up empty Alliance hulls coming back from Songze.

        They’re used to working with Grik, so Geer’ki can become a go-between. Neither he or the Maroons have any bad memories of Japanese to have to dispel.

        Reply
  10. By Justin on

    I get the feeling that Geerki is going to spend much of the Invasion of Sofesshk in front of a loudspeaker, a la Enemy at the Gates.

    “Brave soldiers of the Grik Empire, there is no shame in surrender. You have nothing to fear from the Union hunters; our quarrel is with your Chooser, and bloodthirsty Esshk! If you wish to live, do not resist. Throw down your weapons, and approach the nearest Union patrol with your hands above your head…”

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      This would hardly work with Griks. They aren’t humans, remember, and the Soffesshk warriors defend more than their capital – they defend their new Celestial Mother.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        That’s operating under the assumption that Esshk will still have the CM. She’s coming into her own pretty fast, after all.

        Reply
      2. By Matt on

        The new soldiers do have a better chance to think for themselves though. Remember what happened to Halik. The potential is there although in Halik’s case he had a long road to developing his own opinions and was helped along the way with Nimura and also seeing the treachery of Esshk and Kurokawa. Essk’s troops haven’t had that opportunity yet.

        Reply
  11. Taylor AndersonBy Taylor Anderson (Post author) on

    “DEVIL’S DUE” is officially on the loose!

    I’m very excited and hope you all enjoy reading it as much as I loved writing it! I’ll be getting a few copies to give away–signed, of course. Hey! How about a “Favorite Scene in the Series” contest? (Pre Devil’s Due, to avoid spoilers). Describe your choice here or on my facebook page by, say, July 4th, and three winners will be determined by how many comments agree with you!

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      My vote would be for the Battle of Baalkpaan. The first true battle of the Union, and in my opinion, the most key; if they had been defeated, that would have been it for the Union and the concept of the allied nations/peoples.

      OK, yeah, and the end of the series.

      Reply
  12. By Duke Saxon on

    Anyone else hoping for a bit of Chekhov’s Gun with the revolver that Matt received? Hopefully it will actually be used, even if it isn’t by Matt.

    Reply
  13. By William Curry on

    I wonder if the League of Tripoli will have Arditi? Grenades and daggers.

    Reply
    1. By Duke Saxon on

      That would be rather interesting. I look forward to seeing the Alliance go up against a modern force, especially a strategically intelligent one.

      Reply
  14. By Justin on

    Got two chapters through rereading Into the Storm when it hit me: half the original cast is gone, either dead or forgotten.

    Ellis – dead
    Kaufman – dead
    Gray – dead
    Frankie – dead
    Dowden – dead
    Jamie – dead
    Keje – pushed to background
    Selass – pushed to background (is she even alive?)
    Felts – dead
    Saak-Fas – dead
    Karen Theimer – pushed to background
    Tolson – dead

    Wonder how much of the starting line’ll be more than footnotes by war’s end…

    Reply
  15. By Logan Meyers on

    I was wondering how if we will see any ex-HNBC men in the empires forces. After all not all of them would have been executed, and reasonably it would be much too extensive to execute all or most of them. We could expect those involved in the bomb plot, those who actively aided the Doms, and severe war crimes would be punished executed. But for the rest its a lot of trained men who have experience at least in logistics if you don’t include expired crews and captains. It might not be best to employ them against the Doms at first due to the betrayals that have occurred but I would think they could be valuable against the Grik. Not to mention I doubt they would be as cold to the Americans after having to see what they are holding back. Thoughts on seeing them or how they would be employed?

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      Crews would be ok against the doms but not the upper level officers. Possibly not the senior enlisted also but low level enlisted and low level officers would be ok as not policy level personnel.

      Reply
      1. By Logan Meyers on

        But do you think those others could be used against the Grik? But beware of spies in those used against the Doms.

        Reply
    2. By Steve Moore on

      Didn’t this get addressed in Rising Tides and Firestorm? They investigated captains of HNBC ships and if they passed muster, commissioned them into Navy and rated the ships as auxiliaries?

      Reply
      1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Yep. Ships and assets were seized, but many officers and crew were allowed to serve.

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          The fact that the many crew members and officers were allowed to sign back on to the real navy without problems indicates that these who were causing problems were all very high company and they kept it close to the vest. This is shown by the great number of ships that were described as captured by the Doms on the day they took over those in their port without the captains knowing anything.
          Had it been me, I would have had the ships taken over on arrival so that none could escape because there would not have been any warning at all.

          Reply
  16. By Paul on

    Lawrence needs he’s own adventure away from the rest of the cast so he can graduate from side-kick/comedy relief.

    He’s in command of crappy little tug at the moment with only Grik as crew. Huge storm comes in and the tow rope parts and BOOM! Lawrence is off towards exotic parts unknown and adventure! Maybe he can rescue himself a girl friend and discover some goodies or people brought over from our world.

    It would be good/interesting seeing him taking a more leadership type role.

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Personally hoping to get him married off to a high-ranking Grik/Khonashi… maybe even the CM. Fingers crossed.

      Reply
    2. By Lou Schirmer on

      Or he could go ashore on a pre-attack intel run up river on the main land to get some specifics on what Esshk is up to in book #13. Say he start’s with support, Silva & company, gets cut off & has to improvise, adapt & overcome.

      I like Justin’s idea of hooking up with the new CM. Maybe kidnapping her. Or she may even come willingly, he IS a handsome devil after all. She may be old enough to start being able to think for herself & see she’s going to be Esshk’s & the Chooser’s puppet & be looking for some way to change that. May have an agenda of her own, poorly thought out at first, but association with Larry may give her some ideas.

      Reply
      1. By Lou Schirmer on

        Now all we need is an annoying blonde lizard & a Frisbee from hell.

        Reply
      2. By donald johnson on

        Well if she does come along she will probably mate with Pokey not Larry. Pokey will probably look more normal than Larry June Larry strange coloring pattern that she is not used to. By then even Pokey might be a smart guy as the lizards seam to grow in intelligence as they age and he will be more than two years old by then

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Probably depends on whether Grik favour status or race – Pokey’s still an Uul, but Larry’s a Hij (also, more important to the plot).

          Reply
          1. By Steve Moore on

            Wouldn’t it be more believable if she shacks up with Halik, assuming you could ever get him to Grik DC? Although Esshk may want to be some kind of lizard Svengali and keep her under his thumb.

            Larry needs to find some nice little Khonashi girl a little closer to home (and species), rather than some spoiled Grik female who will just sit around at home eating bon-bons.

          2. By donald johnson on

            I can see Halik sending a team to Rescue her from those who have her. But also we must remember that there are a bunch of the high class females that escaped so all would need to be captured to have any real lingering effect. Those not captured would need to be killed.

  17. By Duke Saxon on

    I’m hoping the Republic sees some action in Devil’s Due as they are rather differently equipped then the Alliance, and I think this could make for some very interesting encounters- especially on the naval front with those coastal defence monitors.

    Reply
    1. By Clifton Sutherland on

      I’d like to see their forces go up against the Grik on Land. and don’t worry, they are the closest in the Alliance to the League…they will get their chance for combat.

      Reply
      1. By Duke Saxon on

        I’m really hoping for a few Republic/ German characters that we’ll get to follow for a good few chapters at least. I’m also hopeful that we will see some soldiers equipped in the way Ernst Junger describes in his WW1 memoir “Storm of Steel”- basically many pistols, a shovel, pickaxe or knife, and a few grenades for close in trench fighting.

        Reply
  18. By Andrew clark on

    What does everyone think Lieutenant Fiedler will do now that he’s in the hands of the Allies. My belief is that he will attempt to defect from the League somehow.
    Thoughts?

    Reply
    1. By Justin on

      Welcome aboard, Andrew.

      Given the current internal tension in the League, we should indeed expect a lot of resentful Germans defecting to the Allied powers in the next few books. Fiedler himself might not though – so far, he’s only really warmed up to Muriname’s faction.

      Reply
      1. By Duke Saxon on

        Well, I find it more likely that they would defect to Republic forces, especially if some of the soldiers are old enough to remember the Kaiser and the Weimar Republic

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          Well, any port in a storm – hence “Allied”, not “Union.” But yes, the League Germans would probably prefer a Kaiser and other Germans.

          Reply
        2. By Logan Meyers on

          I’m not sure the Weimar republic would be as helpful at pulling them over due to unhappiness over the depression it found itself in during its short time in control. But older officers and young men with loyalist (to the monarchy) parents would be more likely to side with a nation that had other WW1 veterans. Not to mention the outrage at hearing the French members killed what many would consider a warrior hero. Despite the captains age he was quite the German warrior and died going up against great odds. Something that many of the unhappy and mistreated Germans could rally around. The sinking of the Amerika might have a much bigger backlash than the league could ever expect.

          Reply
    2. By Steve White on

      If I were Reddy I might give Fiedler a chance but the rest of the league guys sitting in Madagascar waiting on their ship? Tree, rope, some assembly required. Let the League do what it may.

      Reply
  19. By Julian Ceres on

    Now I know that this would possibly never happen.

    But what if in the next book, the Mighty Mo showed up in the next book.

    P.S I know that this is super unlikely to happen but it’s only a what if statement for me atm.

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      I’m afraid, it’s impossible. The Destoyermen’s Main Transfer Rule: “no ships with real combat records allowed”.

      I.e. the “Missouri” could not be used in series – she have a real combat record.

      On the other hands – the “Kentucky” and “Illinois” (two “Iowa”-class battleships, lef unfinished after World War II came to the end) could be used – because they have no actual combat records.

      Reply
  20. By Julian Ceres on

    I always wondered if a South Carolina class Battleship had a standoff with the Savioe Battleship in a 1v1 fight.

    I know that the South Carolina class battleship has smaller guns, but it has an absurd amount of citadel armor. I think it’s like 405mm everywhere on the citadel. Also the South Carolina has at least 315mm of hull armor.

    The savioe on the other hand I think has considerably less armor, But obviously has slightly bigger guns, has more guns per turret. So I’ve wondered, Which ship would be victorious? The South Carolina class battleship, or the Savioe Battleship?

    Reply
    1. By Duke Saxon on

      South Carolina has a number of issues limiting its ability. For one, it might have difficulty penetrating the Savioe at range (I’ll have to look up the specific guns in question for more detail) In addition, the SC has rather poor secondaries, and is also pretty darn slow. I’d say it would be basically a coin flip- down to crew skill, luck, and whoever had better fire control.

      Reply
      1. By Julian Ceres on

        What about a new mexico class battleship?

        would that stand a better chance?

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          The “New Mexico” was superior to “Savoie” almost as much as “Savoie” was superior to “South Carolina”. Better guns, better protection, better fire control… she was just plainly bigger, after all!

          Reply
    2. By Justin on

      If we’re talking about WoWS, Savoie is mostly likely a Tier 5. Against a Tier 3, she wins.

      If we’re talking about a real fight, their armour’s about the same.
      Bigger guns also means greater range. Combined with the fact that Savoie is a couple of knots faster, Carol’s going to take a few hits before she’s even in range – that is, if she can even catch up.

      Reply
    3. By Alexey Shiro on

      //I always wondered if a South Carolina class Battleship had a standoff with the Savioe Battleship in a 1v1 fight.//

      Not a chance.

      “South Carolina” is much weaker in terms of armament (she have only eight 12-inch guns against “Savoie” eight 13,5-inch guns), slower (18,5 knots as best against “Savoie”‘s 20), and have weaker deck armor. Her only advantage was the slightly thicker belt around magazines.

      Even if the “South Carolina” would have some upgrade in 1930s – and this is almost completely impossible, the US Navy considered her obsolete even before World War I – she would be much weaker than “Bretagne”-class superdreadnought.

      Reply
  21. By donald johnson on

    I just re read the last book and I am beginning to realize that Taylor has big plans for Halik. Too much going on with and around him for anything else. My suspensions are that at a minimum there will be a temporary partnership to remove Kurakawa which most likely wont work as I see him escaping and joining the doms. He will most likely be too pissed with the league to run to them on any permanent basis. If he is forced to go to the league then he will find a way to get them to send him to the doms.

    Reply
    1. By Steve Moore on

      A long way for Kurakawa to run, to an uncertain future. Don’t see how Don Hernan and he could coexist as leaders unless K was given his own empire. Plus, without the Japanese workers and his inventory, he’s up the creek.Or, the League and the Doms working together. What would be scarier… is if the NUS throws in with the League…

      Reply
  22. By Paul on

    Just finished my umpteenth read through of the series and I have to wonder how/why the USS Walker keeps on keeping on. Time for Captain Reddy to upgrade to something with a bit more teeth and let the poor Wickes class destroyer rest. I know its been built up as a icon but really its just not up to the job anymore and hero ships as characters in their own right doesn’t really work in a universe where ships can die just as easily as everybody else and are whole lot bigger targets.

    Reply
    1. By Duke Saxon on

      Well the next book is called “Devil’s Due”, so that could be hinting that someone or a certain ship’s number is up…

      Reply
    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      (Chanting and jumping with pom-poms) Batt-le-cruiser! Batt-le-cruiser!

      Reply
    3. By Lou Schirmer on

      I think light cruiser! light cruiser! is more likely. Especially since they have one under construction. With our heroes familiarity with the Omaha class, current tech limits & the series being about a 4-piper, it’ll probably be a 4-piper light cruiser, using the rest of Amagi’s 5.5″ guns as a main battery, with 4″ DPs as secondary armament. Hopefully, by the time it’s operational, they’ll have some 25mm & .50 caliber AAA.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        That’s the likely progression, I think. First one Omaha by the end of ’44, then as Union shipyards get comfortable with making CLs, a large CA (20kT?) around ’45 or ’46, then a couple of BCs.

        Reply
        1. By Duke Saxon on

          Hmm… Perhaps we could see a modernized version of the Republic’s monitor guns.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, if you could build a CA, you could build a BC as well, actually. Heavy cruisers weren’t “organically formed”; they were the result of Washington Treaty, which allowed them as maximum non-capitalship class.

            So, if you could build a 10000 CA, you could build a 25000 ton BC as well. And the price would be less than 50% more, because majority of components would be the same.

          2. By Duke Saxon on

            Well, that’s not entirely true. If you build a BC on the Fisher model, then yes, it would not be much more expensive to produce than a heavy cruiser.

            If you built on the German model, then it would be somewhat closer in cost to a proper battleship.

          3. By Lou Schirmer on

            They’re going to have to up the ante on guns. They’ll want to at least match or be in the neighborhood of a known threat (Savoie), so I figure they’ll have to get the Republic to try & make at least a 13″ or large main battery. Send them parts, specs & drawings of Amagi’s turret system also, as a starting point.
            Also, to get enough speed for a large BC, they’ll have to develop a bigger turbine/boiler setup, probably with super heat & a high & low pressure turbine per shaft. So a BC is several years down the road.
            They could go with a “super CA” though, basically a light BC at about 15,000 tons with light armor & a Republic main battery. Going with four of the improved Walker turbine sets & whatever the Republic is already building that’s “bigger & better” than their 8″ guns the monitors have. You could put 6 11-12″ guns on a hull like that & still get 30 knots or so.

          4. By Duke Saxon on

            Well that would be more like a Panzerschiffe than a BC, but I agree that that would be the largest sort of ship we could expect from the Alliance any time soon.

          5. By Alexey Shiro on

            //They’re going to have to up the ante on guns. They’ll want to at least match or be in the neighborhood of a known threat (Savoie), so I figure they’ll have to get the Republic to try & make at least a 13″ or large main battery. //

            Well, I mentioned this several times before: they may use a composite gun approach.

            You see, the average heavy gun is made from high-tensile steel. And requires a large quantites of such material – which is not easy to produce in sufficient quantites. There are two main approaches with the gun design – the british one, when the inner tube is covered by layers of wire, and the european one, when the inner tube is hooped to produce required durability. Problem is, that the required ammounts of high-quality steel is outside the Destroyermen capabilities.

            But there is a different approach: the composite gun. They existed; they served. The Spanish in 1880-1890 produced a large number of Ordonez heavy rifles – up to 12 inches! – with only small ammount of steel used.

            The typical Ordonez gun was composed of steel inner tube, cast-iron body and wrough-iron hoops. The gun were heavier than the all-steel gun of the sape pressure, but workable and durable. Several of them served up until 1930s!

            That’s the approach, I think, the Alliance should use on their battlecruisers. The heavy guns with only the inner tube is steel – and the outer body is cast-iron, strenghtened by the wrough-iron hoops.

            //Also, to get enough speed for a large BC, they’ll have to develop a bigger turbine/boiler setup, probably with super heat & a high & low pressure turbine per shaft. So a BC is several years down the road.//

            Nah, they already have turbines for light cruisers. The BC could use the same, just twice the number.

          6. By Justin on

            //So, if you could build a 10000 CA, you could build a 25000 ton BC as well. And the price would be less than 50% more, because majority of components would be the same.//

            Problem is that nobody in the Union has any experience with large hulls or large guns. Best start (relatively) small, iron out all the bugs, then work your way up… otherwise you’re like the Soviets trying to build a Sovetsky Soyuz.

            //Nah, they already have turbines for light cruisers. The BC could use the same, just twice the number.//

            Which, as Lou figured out, are probably four Walker-class turbines: that’s 50k shp, give or take 20k.

            Unless the Union gets a new transfer or can reverse-engineer what’s left of Hidoiame, the only option is to put 2 turbines on a screw. And according to William, that’s a very bad idea.

            //You could put 6 11-12″ guns on a hull like that & still get 30 knots or so.//

            IMO, 3×3 9″ guns and 32 knots would work better against superfast Italian cruisers. Not much point in trading in speed AND armour for superior gun range that you won’t be able to keep for long.

          7. By Lou Schirmer on

            //There are two main approaches with the gun design – the british one, when the inner tube is covered by layers of wire, and the european one, when the inner tube is hooped to produce required durability. //
            The DDmen can do the steel barrel liner & they’re making steel wire (or can)). A composite gun with that & the Spanish wrought or cast iron body would work.
            However the Republic is already making large caliber guns. Either have them make the BC main battery or bring some of their gun makers up to Balkpaan to upgrade the gun works.

          8. By Duke Saxon on

            So far the Alliance (if I recall correctly) has been unable to produce quality armor plate. That could prove to be a real issue against the league as the League has proper naval guns- ones that could sink the Walker with ease.

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          //First one Omaha by the end of ’44, then as Union shipyards get comfortable with making CLs, a large CA (20kT?) around ’45 or ’46, then a couple of BCs.//

          A Ca @ 20kt would be a BC. The largest WW2 US CAs were about 14kt. You could mount 6 12″ rifles on them or 8 x 10-11″. These would be good sized & armed to take on anything but a BB. That’s where the speed comes in. See a BB & run like hell (the original Fisher concept).
          However two turbines per screw needs some sort of complex synchronizing gear or a clutch to match the turbines speed at the shaft. Could go with a double reduction gear with a clutch on each turbine. Once they’re clutched in, use a valve control to equalize the steam pressure on each turbine…maybe…possibly.
          Bill, help! I’m well out of my depth here!

          Reply
          1. By Lou Schirmer on

            Plus you’re up to eight turbines & 16 boilers which will increase the size of the hull. With what they’re currently running that would be about 108k shp & jack the hull up around another 5k tons. The WW2 US cruisers were running around 110k shp @14k tons & 33 knots…ish. At 24-25k tons & 108ish shp, you might get 27-28 knots, which is too slow to run from the late 1930s BBs or even CAs of the League.
            Plugging 8turbines & 16 boilers into a 14k hull, takes us to 18-20k tons & 30+ knots. On a hull that size 8/9 x 12″ rifles are doable & it becomes interesting. If they go with super heated steam & turbines to take it, the tonnage goes down.

          2. By Justin on

            Well, it’s a pretty blurred line between CA and BC; the Des Moines and Admiral Hipper-class cruisers were in the 16 kt range, and the P-class cruisers were planned at 23.7 kt.

            I think it depends on the dimensions and armament – my latest take has three triple 9″ guns, which no self-respecting BC would ever have.

          3. By Justin on

            Say, Lou, which year are you using? I’ve got ’29 for the hull and ’37 for the engine.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Whoa, Lou, you are aiming too high. I was thinking about 25-27 knots battlecruiser, not the 30+ knots one. 25 knots would be pretty enough to outrun old battleships, and stay more or less in line with destroyers and light cruisers.

            So, we probably could use only four turbines.

          5. By Justin on

            Or, not high enough. I’d bet good money that the League has a Caracciolo or two – that’s 28 knots maximum. The faster, the better.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            My bet on the “Leonardo da Vinci”, but the point is, 28-knot speed or more would require… certain sacrisfies in other areas. I.e. weaponry, protection, range or seakeeping.

            The Alliance obviously could not build ships with limited seakeeping ability – not with strakkas around. They need range, also, to be able to cross the vast ocean theaters.

            So, we are down to weaponry and protection. Frankly, I’m reluctant to lessen the protection – one of the Alliance most important advantages is that the Alliance could repair heavily damaged ships. And, we would probably stuck with Harvey armor, so the plates would be thicker (and heavier) than cemetned with the same level of protection.

            So, we could lessen only the armament – and I think, that BC need at least 12-inch guns to be viable against League heavies.

            IMHO, the 28+ knots are too much. 25 knots would probably be enough; I really doubt that League have full squadrons of fast battleships around!

          7. By Justin on

            Maybe we should figure out what we’re designing her to do.

            If she’s trying to sink old dreadnoughts like Savoie, then 12-inchers won’t cut it against 13.4s, especially if it means sacrificing armour.

            If she’s “merely” a cruiser-killer, then 9″ or 10″ guns work just fine on a 17-18 kT hull. From there, it’s easy to give her 30+ knots and 6+ inches of belt.

          8. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, when I worked on such design, I stated several main goals for battlecruiser:

            1) To be able to engage and destroy any League units short of capital ships (i.e. destroyers, light cruisers and heavy cruisers).

            2) To be able to engage League’s capital ships, providing support to the Alliance light units and/or covering the possible advance/retreat.

            3) Serve as “escort-breaker” for the nighttime attack against League’s navy, leading the destroyers formation.

            Basically, the functions of “Kongo”-class battlecruisers after their refit in 1930s.

            So, my general idea was the 25000+ ton ship, of 24-27 knots, armed with three dual 12,5-inch mounts (ten 4-inch secondaries, four autocannons and four triple torpedo tubes) and protected in vital parts again 13-inch shells.

          9. By Lou Schirmer on

            //Say, Lou, which year are you using? I’ve got ’29 for the hull and ’37 for the engine.//
            Justin, I didn’t know you could do different years on the engines. I was just doing estimates anyway. I do have a few design studies in Spring Sharp. One is w/6×14″ guns @ 19k tons. At 100k shp it’ll do 30+ knots, at 54k shp (what they have now) she’ll do 26 knots. That’s running w/5″ main belt & 4″ deck.
            Ah! Now I see where the two years come in, the first page. I’ve been going ’45 for both. I’m going to have to redo it, but have to run right now, back in a few hours.

          10. By Paul on

            But will it be an Alliance home build or an import from another universe?

            With the author reaching into What If universes for adversaries I do wonder if he will want to do something similar regarding Reddy and the Alliance, explore some of the ‘drawing board but never built’ designs the US contemplated but never got around to actually laying down before they were over taken by events or technology.

            Of course there are a lot of drawbacks to going that way not the least of which is since they were never built nobody knows if they work or not, so probably not.

  23. By Clifton Sutherland on

    Here’s a potent thought- what if, in the next book, we meet an adversary who, contrary to the trend of sociopaths and madmen who seem to oppose the Alliance, is instead basically a doppelganger of Captain Reddy?

    Someone who cares deeply about their men, is able to make smart, cunning decisions both on the battlefield, and in the political office.

    Who has the loyalty of his men not from fear, but from their knowledge that he will lead them to victory.

    Do you guys think such a character would have a place in the story? how would it effect future developments?

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      There is a brick General that meets this descriptio. He has not been mentioned much since he was kicked out of India other than kicking the ass off another brick Army trying to get back to his people and bringing his army with him safely.
      I suspect Taylor has great plans for him in the next few books.

      Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        I’m times I hate voice input on cell phones you really need to check every word my last really got messed up saying brick for Grik. I also hate the spell checks that mind gives me after I hit send sometimes.

        Reply
      2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Here I will only say that, while some nutcases remain rampant, years of war do tend to eventually breed degrees of competence. Sometime to a disconcerting level. If nothing else, idiocy is one of those self-correcting behaviors. People who are too stupid to live . . . don’t. It’s too bad that they usually take a lot of good people with them. But if the “fittest” survive long enough, they tend to rise to the top. Still, remember that we are dealing with a lot of very weird cultures that flat don’t always THINK anything like “we” do. This can hurt them, but it also makes them unpredictable.

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          I always wondered why Grik general Halik did not actually surrender and offer the services of his army to Ready. It just shows that my understanding is incomplete as I assumed that survivors of battle in his culture would do so if offered if they had not suffered Grik Route.
          Cannot wait for the next book and I see The book has been named answering the question i asked last week.

          Reply
          1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            That’s simple, Donald. (Sort of). basically, Halik didn’t know he COULD surrender. The concept didn’t even exist in his mind. Remember, he was just as surprised by the surrender of troops in the Indus River Valley as anyone. And it probably never occurred to Alden to ask Halik to “join the hunt.” He was, in fact, certain the People (any people) could never truly live in peace with Grik. Totally new notions for both of them, but both are becoming more pragmatic. And the Grik “snipes” that changed sides on the Tatsuta Class tug were not warrior Grik. They are actually rather “new” themselves, basically subservient to anyone who tells them what to do. Still consistent with their earlier culture, but not beaten into them that they will be slain if they flee from battle, only if they shirk their duties. Castes within castes have been seen before, but early contact with Grik Indiamen, in which even the sailors were warriors, set the Allied mindset. “Snipe Grik” have way too much to occupy them to worry about fighting physical combat. They would probably “rout” if attacked–or maybe not. Here’s one for you. What about other more technical Grik, taught even to operate cannon or other weapons, but not taught (or expected) to engage in direct physical combat? How might they react with it forced upon them? The Grik are a monolithic culture on the surface, but the seeds of its own subversion are quickly sending shoots into the cracked foundation. One reason Esshk is pretty sure he’ll have to roll back all the changes he has instituted if the Grik are to return to the way things were. What are the chances of that?

            Backtracking, Halik probably wouldn’t have surrendered, particularly in India, because from his perspective only a Regent (or its equivalent) can join another hunt and he rejected the notion of him having that capacity for a very long time. Besides, he was still very “Grik,” and devoted to the idea of the Celestial Mother as his God on earth.
            There was also the burgeoning and real loyalty he felt toward Esshk, (second only to the Celestial Mother in his mind), influenced by (warped) Japanese Bushido code–that even his friend has begun to reject–ultimately influencing Halik to question his loyalty to Esshk “right or wrong.”

            He has been a very confused lizard, working a lot of stuff out on his own, probably the first time a Grik general has ever done so. Possibly not the LAST however, for good or ill.

            Still, Halik’s greatest loyalty is now to his army and it remains to be seen what he will do with it. I’m only about half sure myself. When I get into “Grik think” I am often surprised by the motivations I suddenly consider pertinent.

            I had hoped you’d get a kick out of the announcement. The funny thing is, I am always told to keep mum about the title and cover art until they say I can release it–and every time, they go ahead and beat me to it without telling me, leaving me looking like a heel for still telling people I can’t blow.

          2. By Charles Simpson on

            Hmm, hij Geerki talked General Arlskgter to offer to join the Alliance troops at Rangoon in Rising tides. The idea come from the Japanese Geerki had worked with as a procurer of supplies. Some of the Grik Generals may have had training from other Japanese and learned of the concept of surrender before the Japanese mentors retreated to Zanzibar. it will be fun to see how Taylor develops this, some may thake Bushido die for the Celestial Mother before dishonorable surrender, others may think for themselves surrender is an option in a no win situation. My guess is a mix.

            Thinking of the end game Esshk might realize to fight modern armies means the Grik can no longer afford unthinking uhl and thus the Grik culture evolves. The Chooser and Esshk have already discussed the Celestialmother becoming more of a figurehead who reigns rather than the older form where she rules, so Grik culture is already a changing.

          3. By donald johnson on

            Still surprising to me that they told you to release the same week i asked :-)
            Still Halik has to have been aware that there had been those who had surrendered and survived previously.

          4. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Yeah, it was, Donald. Pretty ironic!
            Actually though, Halik couldn’t have known of previous surrenders (or attempts to do so) such as the Grik at Raan-goon. And they were pretty weird and out on a limb long enough that they had become, well, not “independent,” but a little disassociated. They were the first example of large scale aberrant Grik behavior if you think about it. And Hij Geerki wasn’t a warrior. Otherwise, “routed” warriors, such as Pokey, only cooperated after they were away from the pack for a while, if they survived. There were some exceptions. Rasic Alcas’ guards are an example, but they too had been basically abandoned. A recurring criteria seems to be “being alone with one’s thoughts” for a while, or in other words, possibly an opportunity for a little introspection and mental maturation. These things rarely occur in any society in the midst of “group think.” Sorry. Didn’t mean to get so philosophical.
            Speaking of things that are amazingly philosophical, I saw two examples of evolution in action last weekend. First was a pair of rattlesnakes as big around as my forearms (which are fairly large). Neither one rattled. Of course, as noted before, those that do are gulped down by feral hogs. Second was what has become a new species of wolf. These started as “coy dogs”–coyote/dog hybrids–that were generally larger than coyotes and had a reddish tint. Over time, they have reproduced and established themselves as predators colored like a dark coyote and about the size of a German Shepherd. Otherwise, they act like coyotes, running and hunting in packs, highly social and vocal, but their call is louder and deeper than coyotes. Pretty amazing. Of course, they are very hard on the deer population.

          5. By donald johnson on

            When I was referring to previous surrenders I was referring to those who surrendered to join the hunt like the Japanese did and the feferance that others had been allowed to do so. I don’t remember which book but it was I believe book 3 0r 4.

          6. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Remember also, though, that the Japanese smashed 3 attempts to swarm them under–in a leaking, creeping ship. It did remain supremely powerful however, and Kurokawa enjoyed “regent” status of his own hunters from the start. The American D-Men were never seen that way since they joined the “prey that got away,” which had been established in Grik genetic memory as an example of a foe that HAD to be vanquished. The Grik and ‘Cats became like cats and dogs, with no accommodation possible (without a seemingly very improbable familiarity) I say this because there are ALWAYS exceptions.
            Weird example: My wife and daughter rescued a very stupid cat. His name, in fact (because I used it often enough that he started answering to it is . . . Stupid.) Well, oddly, Stupid has sort of become MY cat in a bizarre Petey reverse analog sort of way. (Petey definitely predates him). ANYWAY, my daughter has an Aussie Shepherd that is arguably far stupider than the cat with the exception that her initial obsession was to murder him. He simply refused to allow that outcome, showed no fear, and thwarted the dog’s murderous impulses with measured violence–and more importantly–disdain. He was probably too stupid to know he should be afraid. The only thing that scares him is “death from above” in the form of owls, hawks and buzzards, since I imagine he witnessed the murder of one of his siblings whose raptor mauled corpse I discovered in the yard. The point is, ultimately, the dog is STILL obsessed with him in a bizarre . . . unnatural way that resembles nothing more closely than WORSHIP now. She follows him around, staring at him from a distance of about 3 inches, even when he is asleep. Eeewwww! When he suddenly attacks her (in play) she acts like she has been chastised by her God. It is creepy weird, but ultimately, she has become Stupid the cat’s PET. This has all been a relatively recent development over the last year or so, but it’s eerie how it reflects some of the changing relationships in the series, isn’t it?

          7. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Grik genetic memory//

            Er… I hope, “genetic memory” is used in a figurative sense?

          8. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Yes, Alexey, it was. Although I am not utterly opposed to the notion of certain kinds of genetic memory. Instincts spring to mind, and from a more complicated angle, so do certain predispositions, manifested in what we refer to as “talents.” I’m sure we could have an interesting debate about such things.

          9. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, according to some modern recearchs, some stresses actually could be imprinted in DNA. The mechanics is not completely clear, but seems to be RNA-based. It isn’t the sensoric data; more likely it’s the lessened response to the similar stress factors observed from the offspring. I.e. the offsprings of the speciemens, that lived under constant stress would likely be more resistant to said stress.

    2. By Justin on

      A Pellaeon equivalent in the League would indeed be a nice change of pace.

      Reply
    3. By Alexey Shiro on

      Hm… I wonder: considering that at least some known parallel worlds are pretty similar, what if some adversary from next books WOULD BE the doppelganger of Captain Reddy?

      I.e. his version from parallel world where he is on the side of Bad Guys. Generally the same person, same traits – but with allegiance to something really bad. Maybe even with goatee)

      Reply
    4. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

      Oh, and on the note of “other hunters who have joined the hunt,” the dark outcomes of those associations were hinted at long before the discovery of some of their surviving “examples” on Madagascar. One might suppose other examples may not have survived to be installed in their zoo.

      Reply
    5. By jeff on

      I think the only problem potentially with that type of character could be that a character like that might be hard to hate. I hate kurokawa and the grik. ive come to actually like Halik, who is nearly a match for matt in the respect from his troops department. i also hate the doms.

      Reply
    6. By Jackson Rikey on

      Better yet, since we’re talking about hypothetical universes, what would happen if another Matt Reddy came through? Maybe from the same universe as the League? Maybe ends up as the commander of the New US?

      Reply
  24. By Logan Meyers on

    Okay so I have a couple of questions to pose to the rest of the forum. First I was wondering what you guys thought about the Japanese reactions to the alliance members being among them. Will any of the Japanese be curious as to how the unions life is? Will that breed changes in views or get any of them to lose heart? Will the alliance members mention how their Japanese prisoners have been freed to Japan and are now allies?

    On a totally different note I have been wondering this since some guys speculated about Herring, but do you guys think any of the fellas are actually gay in the book? It would be interesting to see how any would be treated in this 1944 world or in the other cultures like the Empire. Dont worry I’m not here to screech like a banshee about equality and all that stuff I’m mainly just curious about how that would affect things.

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      I think culture will be the telling thing in both cases. Among the Japanese being a prisoner is a grave loss of face, I expect the guards will be brutal, and not interested in a foreign culture. After all everyone knows Japanese Culture is superior, and Emperor Hirohito is descended from the sun god 😉

      As to the gay question remember at the time homosexuality was classed as a sexual perversion, its practice severely punished, and its practice a sin in the majority Christian Religion. Now in societies without women, prison, and the Navy, and given the “dame famine” it is possible that sexual relations between men might be winked at, but remember heterosexuals will always prefer women if available, thus any acceptance will evaporate now that the “dame famine” is over. Overt racism was practiced then too, and Taylor has for the most part made the Asiatic Sailors more tolerant than the probably were actually. One reason might be the Lemurians were a different species not just another human race. Other thoughts guys?

      Reply
      1. By Logan Meyers on

        HM do you think then that Matt and the Empire would still do floggings or hangings for buggery if any of their men were found to be homosexuals?

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          I highly doubt Reddy would flog or hang anybody. Not unless Bernard Cornwall takes over writing the next book.
          The Empire maybe, but they do seem to be slightly more enlightened than their OTL contemporaries (less racist, pro-conservation, etc).

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            //I highly doubt Reddy would flog or hang anybody. Not unless Bernard Cornwall takes over writing the next book.//

            Agreed. Especially considering his main reaction toward Silva’s interspecies relations :)

            //The Empire maybe, but they do seem to be slightly more enlightened than their OTL contemporaries (less racist, pro-conservation, etc).//

            And must point out, that situation of other world and other sentient species would inevitably change the limits of the possible and permissible in human’s points of view.

          2. By Logan Meyers on

            You know when it comes to floggings in the empire I could actually see the company ships being either more or less caring about it than the navy. But I would expect the floggings or worse punishments to be at the ships Capitan’s discretion. Where one might be quite understanding to some of his crew members urges as long as they work hard and no troubles arise some others might go very far. After all they are far from anyone and the leadership is pretty much its own court at that point, law of the sea as it were.

          3. By Steve White on

            I wonder if the Company ships in the Empire would have had flogging, and not necessarily for buggery.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, we knew only a bit about the Company) They appeared and disappeared rather quickly)

            They were corporative sub-government, so their onboard policy was probably more controlled by the therms of efficiency&strict control over subordinates, rather than traditions&morale considerations. On the other hands, they were around for more than a century – so, they clearly formed their own traditions…

          5. By Logan Meyers on

            I really wish I could have known more about the company, I hope we run into some ex members in the future. After all not all of them would have been killed and im sure like Billingsley I bet even the ones who would have been subversive would throw in just for a chance to kill the Doms. It would be cool to hear from one of those fellas.

          6. By Alexey Shiro on

            Quite agree! It was stated that the majority of Company’s personnel was strictly anti-Dominion (that’s why they were so devastated when Dom’s infiltration became clear). They were against the ruling monarchy, but it was power struggle, internal.

            Actually Dom’s infiltration saved Empire from a lot of troubles. If the situation was still just internal – Company against the Crown – it would clearly led to a civil war within the Empire.

          7. By Charles Simpson on

            //Logan Meyers on 8 November, 2016

            I really wish I could have known more about the company, I hope we run into some ex members in the future. After all not all of them would have been killed and im sure like Billingsley I bet even the ones who would have been subversive would throw in just for a chance to kill the Doms. It would be cool to hear from one of those fellas.//

            Remember the Governor of Califorina escaped to the Doms during a fake hunting trip and might pop up again if Taylor so wishes. We are to the point in the story now that the Grik, Japanese/Grik, or the Holy Dominion will soon be taken out. As bad alliance loss have been all of the above have been pounded. My own thought is the Japanese/grik will fall first, then the Holy Dominion, and finally the Grik. I see a cold war developing with the League. We know from Courtney’s book parts of the Former Holy Dominion join the Union [Prologue Straits of Hell.]

          8. By Alexey Shiro on

            //My own thought is the Japanese/grik will fall first, then the Holy Dominion, and finally the Grik. I see a cold war developing with the League. We know from Courtney’s book parts of the Former Holy Dominion join the Union//

            Hm. I assumed that means that Dominion fragmented without being utterly conquered.

        2. By Charles Simpson on

          Most likely a quiet word from the chiefs that the Dame famine is over and that form of release is no longer tollerated is all it will take. If it continues, “Oops so and so fell overboard.” We do not know how the Lemurian culture reacts to same sex couples, but given acceptance of Human-Lemurian couples it is likely they are more tolerant of what connecting adults do in their own bed rooms. As to the Republic less so, and the New US and the Empire probably less tolerant and more likely to bring out the Cat of nine-tails. As to Matt, as noted I think the crew will take care of the problem, but Matt is likely to order a know homosexual out of the American Navy Clan. Homophobia was common in the 1940s, and being called a “homosexual” or its then common pejoratives was an insult generally met with fists. I should mention men back then tended to settle things like disrespect and name calling for themselves, and society now is very different. Back then gay meant light hearted and happy. I will repeat the pejoratives, as it is inpolite to cause readers harm you are warned. Fag, fagot, queer, cornholer, bugger (more an UK term than American) are some of the common pejoratives used for gay people. Some times slang could get one in trouble, at the time the common British term for a cigrette was a fag, and the term for an informal visit could get a British person in trouble IE. “Can I knock you up a little later,” sounds obsene to an American, while an American saying “I’m stuffed,” means you’re pregnant to an Australian.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            //Most likely a quiet word from the chiefs that the Dame famine is over and that form of release is no longer tollerated is all it will take. If it continues, “Oops so and so fell overboard.”//

            I REALLY don’t think so. With all respect, but killing their comrades because of their relations – it’s not just a bit, it’s WAY TOO FAR about Destroyermens.

            Most probable outcome – “keep your things private, so no one would knew – and no one would ask”. They have manpower shortage, after all.

            // As to Matt, as noted I think the crew will take care of the problem, but Matt is likely to order a know homosexual out of the American Navy Clan.//

            With his manpower shortage?

          2. By William Curry on

            Don’t forget that Taylor said he want to keep these books PG-13, so I suspect he won’t delve deeply or at all into the issue of homosexuality.

          3. By Logan Meyers on

            Yeah but its fun to speculate about the world it takes place in, and I dont really get how homosexual characters are any worse than people being eviscerated. I mean I’m not talking about descriptive sex scenes.

          4. By Charles Simpson on

            With the Dennis Silva+Risa-Sab-At Romance in the first books human+furry sex is hinted at, and let’s not forget Tabby and her breasts waving in Spanky’s face, there hsa been a little sex in the books but let’s face it the battles and struggle are the bread and butter of the stories. And least we forget remember the scene in Storm Surge between Kurokawa and his young orderly, nothing overt just Kurokawa’s fanticy. Note Japanese culture is more tollerent of homosexuality that American culture of this time, and they are still in a dame famine. So the subject has been broached in the series, and may be revisited.

          5. By Charles Simpson on

            Oh something else is tokenism adding a character so you have a (fill in the blank here) character only to show you have such a character and are not slighting the (fill in the blank here) community. This type of of politically correct writing gets tedious, and is historically inaccurate. Yes Virginia the USN of the early 1940s was almost pure vanilla, and heterosexual, or hid their homosexuality that was how it was in those times. Note even an absolute dictator like Kurosawa controlled his impulses. Now Don Hernan is a heterosexual pedophile and sadist who Taylor admits makes him feel creepy writing about.

          6. By Logan Meyers on

            Yeah I really dislike tokenism for the sake of catering to everyone no matter the setting, thus the reason in my first post I made sure to say that I’m not yelling about that. I was afraid this thread may sound like that.

          7. By Justin on

            “PG-13?” Come on people, inverted crew members (as they were known at the time) doesn’t translate into graphic sex…

            Okay, so on one hand, Logan’s right – catering for catering’s sake is stupid. If taking a crewmember out of the closet can’t be done smoothly or in a way that enhances the plot, don’t bother.

            On the other hand, it IS a story about sailors…

          8. By Alexey Shiro on

            Agreed on tokenism topic. Never see any point in introducing some character (women, homosexual or of another race) just to seems “tolerant”. The sample of main characters in any given novel is relatively small, after all. It’s statistically impossible for them to represent the whole spectre of humankind variations.

            Most point out, that it wouldn’t be tokenism for:

            – Side characters, outside of main cast. Simply speaking, there are much more of them, so statistically talking, there are more probabilities for them.

            – If the situation is part of plot/subplot. For example (talking about Destroyermen) if some newly-transferred high-ranking USN officer would start to push Reddy to discharge some of his men, whos homosexuality became accidently known. And Matt would be forced to find some solution between demand to “do by the book” and his own
            unwillingness to punish the men.

          9. By Justin on

            Right. Or – to borrow from Temeraire – if there’s an important treaty requiring an arranged marriage, and the gay crewmember can’t go through with it.

            And if it turns out to be Silva, I’m throwing the book clean across the room.

          10. By Alexey Shiro on

            //And if it turns out to be Silva, I’m throwing the book clean across the room.//

            Please!!! This would probably be the most Out Of Character thing possible! Silva was clearly stated as heterosexual/xenosexual since the first/second book.

            //Or – to borrow from Temeraire – if there’s an important treaty requiring an arranged marriage, and the gay crewmember can’t go through with it.//

            Or (yeah, my kinky&inverted mind) the important treaty requiring an arranged same-sex marriage) Not completely unheard things, historically, especially in non-european cultures)

            :)

          11. By Logan Meyers on

            Pffft, so overused. Heh. But I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned out to be someone like Juan. And before any jokes are thrown about about him and Matt I’m not thinking like that. Silva is already established as having a strong taste for the ladies and as many as he can find (reminds me of my dad even down to the blonde hair). But Juan gas never really seemed affected by the dame famine and never really seemed as overjoyed when it ended. He has always been very focused on his work and never showed weakness in any situation. I see a lot of gay servicemen be the same way and work tirelessly and be even more tough like they need to prove something to those around them. I mean Juan even lost his leg and jumped right back into his steward work without missing a beat.

          12. By Alexey Shiro on

            Hm. Actually, this make quite a lot of sence, about Juan. Also (if he turned to be gay) for him it would mean a lot less problem than from others. He is outside the usual ranks, he is respected by the crew, and he proven himself a lot.

          13. By Logan Meyers on

            If he ever had any reason for it to even come up it would probably be linked to the time he spent in the empire away from the crew recovering from the loss of his leg. That would most likely be the only time he would have met another gay fellow since all of this started. Plus being away from the crew would make it easier for him since he could fear how people would treat him if that did come out. It would be pretty shitty to have your family look at you differently or focus on that one aspect rather than how things were before that and that would be one of the greater reasons for members to hide such things even with such a close crew. Not to mention he would be horrified if Reddy treated him differently since he really just seems to look up to him.

          14. By Alexey Shiro on

            Actually it may be quite an interesting subplot…

          15. By Logan Meyers on

            I actually enjoy a lot of the subplots even more than the battles themselves. Taylor is really good at them and I find myself rereading the meetings and early visits to the empire a ton.

          16. By Alexey Shiro on

            Agreed. The Empire was out of focus far too long, IMHO. And they lived trough quite “interesting times” – enemy attack, attempted coup, sudden state of total war, collapse of economical model, assasination of Governor-Emperor by military officers…

            Probably not everything right in the Empire right now. After all, the Imperial society is pretty much… outdated. They were thrown from slave-based capitalistic era into the industrial post-nationalistic era of total warfare.

            They probably have a lot of radical conservatives (who want to “return to old ways, like before all this horrible mess”) and radical revolutionaries (who want to “more reform! more social equality! abolish monarhy!”) chasing each other with knives and pistols) Some riots probably too; both from the former slaveowners, and from disstisfied commoners. Basically, they lived through close analogue of the French Revolution.

            And, of course, the fact that high-ranking military officer was involved into the regicide plot…

            I wonder: are there Comissars and Imperial Sequrity guys onboard the Imperial warships now – to watch over the officers loyality?)

          17. By donald johnson on

            // And if it turns out to be Silva, I’m throwing the book clean across the room. //
            And ruin a perfectly good wall :-)
            Remember Silva is Taylor and he ain’t the type for that kinda stuff.

        3. By Duke Saxon on

          In the Empire… perhaps, but I doubt Matt would hang or flog anyone for it. I only see him having men killed as punishment for truly awful crimes- rape, murder, treason, etc.

          That being said, I think the subject alone would make him uncomfortable at least, and he might be disappointed with the crewmen in question.

          Reply
    2. By Alexey Shiro on

      Well, this was actually a question that I think about a lot.

      //On a totally different note I have been wondering this since some guys speculated about Herring, but do you guys think any of the fellas are actually gay in the book?//

      Well, there is undoubtedly a lot of homosexuals in Destroyermen’s world) Problem is, that there aren’t than many of them statistically, to guarantee that someone from main cast “statistically must be a gay”.

      //It would be interesting to see how any would be treated in this 1944 world or in the other cultures like the Empire.//

      Well, my position about this…

      – The Empire probably not bothered much about that. Remember, that they came from XVIII century, i.e. before Victorian era, and their culture is pre-victorian. Moreover, they came thorugh a bottleneck with only a limited numbers of females avaliable in early period. And, well, humans are social creatures) If there are much more males than females avaliable, males started to form some bonds with each other.

      So, my opinion about the Empire – “don’t ask, don’t tell attitude”. Everybody knew that there are a lot of homosexuals around, but as long as everything is “within the framework of decorum” externally, no one would bother to do anything.

      – The Republic was formed by different cultures, some of them have tolerable attitude toward homosexuality, some probably not. About some we simply didn’t knew; for example, what could be the attitude toward homosexuality from X century romans?) We have no X-century Roman Empire to ask!

      But generally the multicultural societies are considered more tolerant. So, the Republic probably have more or less liberal attitude toward this. It is possible, that the central goverment have no point about homosexuality at all, and different factions of the Republic have their own attitude.

      – The Dominion – probably the classic two-faced attitude of their corrupt and twisted religion. I.e. for simple peoples the homosexual relations are considered as sinful, but for upper priests and aristocracy there are some more-or-less clever excuses.

      The general population, hovewer, might have another point of view. After all, quite a lot of pre-columbian cultures accepted homosexual relations (incas, for example)

      – The Lemurians – just no data. They aren’t humans, after all. We knew a bit about their sexuality, but we knew nothing about the possibility of homosexual relations. As far as I knew, homosexuality represented in many species of animals (besides humans); so it’s possible to assume than Lemurians may also have homosexual imdividuals in their ranks.

      Of course we knew nothing about their cultural attidute toward homosexuality, but I could hardly imagine that Lemurians would be extremely hostile in that case. They are, after all, pretty social and not aggressive by their biology.

      – And, well, the Alliance…

      I really don’t think Matt would worry, with whom his people sleeping there, as long as it is by mutual agreement. After all, he didn’t say anything about Silva’s interspecies relations – which are MUCH MORE problematic (even biologically) than just homosexual relations. His only point, I could assume would be “Guys, just do your things so I could pretend that I knew nothing about your, hm, special relationships. Is that clear? Dismissed.”

      Reply
      1. By Logan Meyers on

        I think for the Empire it might be like how it was in Great Britain back in the day where homosexuals were closeted to outsiders but they knew eachother pretty well. The community would have dinner parties and the like where they would be open and meet eachother. During this war many would be spread across the conflict and you would probably have meetings like this.
        “Charles is that you?”
        “Why Anthony! How are you old boy? Have you heard anything of the other chaps”
        “Ah, only some. Poor Kent went west to fight the Grik and we haven’t heard hide nor hair of him. David is a worried wreck but he is too busy with the New Wales trading company to hunt down news. But I’m doing well enough, there was a nice go away dinner before I left.”
        “Such a shame about those two. But I have missed seeing any of the lads, and I regret being gone for your send off.”
        “Well how about we make up for it? I got a bottle of Dom wine.”
        “Ha! Sounds fantastic! And you can tell me if the others while I spin tales of fighting alongside these wild lemurian chaps.”

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Excellent description)

          Must also point out, that attitude to homosexuality is purely cultural part of society, nothing “biological”/ Of course, if we are talking about humans)

          And societies tend to evolve in cultural attitude rather quickly. So, without actual examples (and I really doubt that they would make any sence in novels) it’s almost impossible to predict, what would be the attitude of the Empire, Republic, Dominion or NUS & League toward homosexuals.

          First of all, the bottleneck effect. With the exception of the Republic, both the Empire, the Dominion and the NUS were settled by very small number of initial settlers. I.e., they weren’t the absolute representation of their modern-days attitude and culture simply because there weren’t enough of them. For the Empire this is especially important – because they initially have pretty multicultural population.

          Second, is the influence of the situation. Basically the mere fact that they are in another world, surrouned by different sentient species, and they quickly learned that other and other parallel worlds existed (at least the Republic was able to establish this rather quickly) must seriously affect the ways of thinking and established doctrines. It’s really hard to use religion as argument for some cultural basics (“our sacred books of N say so!”), if the other side could easily counter “yeah? and what exactly YOUR sacred books of N say about parallel worlds, sentient furry creatures and lizards”?

          No offense to any religion, but in such specific situation, they would also be forced to adapt their teaching – or the religion would became increasingly more formal. The Dom’s churhc… well, “adapted” (sort of) to the situation by incorporating the local cults. The Empire’s shifted toward general religious freedom (with the exception of Dominion-caused distrust toward catholics), and it seems that with ewxception of the said catholic minority, the religion factor isn’t very important for them.

          Reply
          1. By Logan Meyers on

            What I have found is that in a lot of cultures where the religious beliefs have strong stances on being anti homosexual it tends to be because they had the “be fruitful and multiply” view. In places where raising population was a major concern they needed everyone adding to it. But in other regions where that wasn’t a problem and populations were large that view fell by the wayside. So there is the possibility that in these places the strictness could be real because once the famine was solved they needed to raise populations. But I would suspect a still strong homosexual community mainly for the fact that they were sailors who came across and were stuck in that situation with no women for so long. As another of the fellas noted there statistically aren’t as many gay guys as there are straight, but from personal observations I have found there to be a whole lot more shades of gray. I know a absolute ton of different levels of bisexuals whether I was in my small home of a logging town in the Cascades or here in the marine corps (now that they can talk about it without fearing being discharged). Its just an interesting thing that you dont really think about.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            //What I have found is that in a lot of cultures where the religious beliefs have strong stances on being anti homosexual it tends to be because they had the “be fruitful and multiply” view. In places where raising population was a major concern they needed everyone adding to it. But in other regions where that wasn’t a problem and populations were large that view fell by the wayside. //

            Exactly. There are a lot of researchs about this matter, but they are quite far away from comprehensive.

            //I know a absolute ton of different levels of bisexuals whether I was in my small home of a logging town in the Cascades or here in the marine corps (now that they can talk about it without fearing being discharged). Its just an interesting thing that you dont really think about.//

            Well, the bisexuality is known for ruining a lot of neat, pretty statistical models) It’s relatively easy to make statistical observation if you have only “1” or “0” possible states of observed objects. It’s several orders of magnitude harder, if you could also have “0,9”, “0,8”, and etc.

            As far as I knew, currently there is no more or less comprehensive model of bisexuality, and most statistical research tended to ignore that at all.

          3. By Logan Meyers on

            Mhm and that I would think would be a lot more common if the characters were to fall into some level of that. Like I think the Japanese who are looking at eachother differently might fall into that gray area. If they didn’t they would most likely just be wishing for women like crazy and going mad from the lack of them.

          4. By Alexey Shiro on

            Probably. The Japanese World War II society was not exactly very tolerant, but clearly not very in-tolerant also. So, they would probably… well. find the solution.

    3. By Charles Simpson on

      To return to the first part of the question Bushido forbids the shame of surrender, thus Muriname’s discourse on how ship wrecked survivors have no real choice in front of their guards to lower their antagonism.

      How do you think Kurokawa will act towards the prisoners? I think he will continue Muriname’s example, he has a new toy, Savoie to play with.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Unpredictable. The main problem with Kurokawa – you never knew how exactly he would act. He is quite insane, after all; his logic is very hard to follow in most cases.

        Currently, Kurokawa is clearly in very good mood. After all, he finally won a clear victory (yes, he lost two carriers, but he clearly considered them replaceable), his situation greatly improved both politically and strategically, and – yes, he have “Savoie”) So, IMHO – for at least some time he would act as a courteous host at least toward Adar & Sandra. He may even try to persuade Adar that he have no animosity toward Lemurians, he was forced to play with the Griks, and now, when he is in control, he would only be glad to negotiate a peace treaty – of course, if Lemurians would cancel their support to those nasty american warmongers. Doubt that would work, but Kurokawa may THINK that it would work… he seems to consider himself a brilliant politician.

        Reply
        1. By Logan Meyers on

          And just think what will happen when the Japanese hear the union is full of women.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, there could be a lot of pressure against Kurokawa to “solve the problem, our lord!”

            And, actually, common Japanese may make things… not pleasant for Alliance female POW’s.

            Of course, it depend greatly of Kurokawa’s attitude toward rape. The average Japanese officers genrally ignored the actions of their soliders toward locals (or even encouraged them), but Kurokawa most definitedly not the average Japanese officer… And he is clearly Card-Carrying Villain enough, so he did not need to kick every puppy nearby to look evil enough.

          2. By Justin on

            Yes, the “comfort women” option is a very disturbing possibility. Hopefully Muriname takes over the prisoners.

          3. By Logan Meyers on

            Yeah Muriname actually game me the most hope that everything wont become insanely miserable for everyone involved in this League plot.

  25. By donald johnson on

    I just realized that the reason that Silva gets away with pulling so much crap. Taylor admitted a few weeks ago that He is Silva in his past life. He is telling us the kind of crap HE used to pull!

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      Taylor was a Marine bad ass, and his Navy corpsman probably tried to keep him out of trouble who Taylor turned into Gunny Horn 😉

      Reply
  26. By Andy Pritchard on

    I know we all have certain things in mind when we read the books in respect of the look of the characters and people we see as those characters. I’ve an image in my mind of the look of the crew as being something like that in Operation Petticoat. Am I close to the mark with it? Always see Matt Reddy (Ewan McGregor) as being dressed in khakis like Cary Grants Captain Sherman. Pete Alden (James Badge Dale) in green fatigues as worn at the start of The Pacific.

    Reply
  27. By Andy Pritchard on

    Controversial post now. Something I’d love to see is either a movie or perhaps a mini series based on the books. But the big question is who to play the characters? I’ll list a few here but would love to see who we all (Talyor especially, as its his sandbox we’re sharing) think could play them.

    Lt Cdr Matt Reddy – Ewan McGregor or Bradley Cooper
    Lt Sandra Tucker – Emma Watson
    Chief Gunners Mate Dennis Silva – David Bautista
    Courtney Bradford – Geoffrey Rush

    Any others?

    Reply
      1. By Andy Pritchard on

        Lol, glad you approve skipper. I’m stuck on a few of the others, Greg Garrett and Spanky etc. And as for the Mi Anaaka…..If you were to film this they’d need to be CGI or the same as the BBC used for Dr Who, as in really good prosthetics. But Tom Hanks for Keje is a good one.

        Reply
    1. By Duke Saxon on

      Considering the Grik and Lemurians, it would be much easier (and likely cheaper) to make an animated film or tv series out of it. Frankly that’s something I’v been wanting since I first started reading the books a good few years back. I’d bet that some animation studio in Japan would be willing to take it up…

      I agree with many of your actor pics though for either live action or just as voices. We do need a good voice actor for Kurokawa though…. not sure who I’d pick for him in all honesty.

      For the Kapitan of SMS Amerika, Jürgen Prochnow would be a very good option if he’d agree to it.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Hm… What do you think about the japanese anime series? There are still a few of great animators who work without much fanservise.

        Reply
        1. By Duke Saxon on

          True. The trick would be to find a studio that could create it in an artstyle that is relatively realistic. There was a pretty good time travel series a while back called Zipang that had a pretty good art style, but the series was never really finished.

          If the studio is still around…. they might be a decent fit.

          Reply
          1. By Duke Saxon on

            I think Warcraft style CG would look very…. off in this case. If it is animated, I think 2d (or mixed) animation would look better.

        2. By Lou Schirmer on

          The folks that did the Warcraft movie did real well applying CGI onto actors for the Orcs & could do something similar for the Griks & Cats.

          Reply
          1. By Justin on

            Right, but keep in mind how well Warcraft did at the box office…

    1. By Charles Simpson on

      “cant remember the name of that bar in balikpan …” The formal name “The Castaway Cook,” and the informal name “The Busted Screw.” The cook/manager/barkeep’s name is “Pepper” his favorite line is, “Ya wanna eat?”

      Reply
      1. By donald johnson on

        Maybe the cat characters be more realistic in their voices if they were spoken with helium. It would be more in squeaky voices and to me more realistic

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Please! We are living in a digital age! Not in the age when you need a creaking door in studio to create sound of creaking door! :)

          Reply
          1. By donald johnson on

            they should at least be higher pitched than humans, besides why not a low budget CGI with as little computer graphics as possible

  28. By Charles Simpson on

    Anyone notice Taylor’s hint that Keje-Fris-Ar and Tassat-Ay-Aracca may be romantically involved, both are single needing a mate, and their USNRS carriers, Salissa and Arracca, have linked to form a “Home” under the new constitution of the United Homes.

    Reply
  29. By Charles Simpson on

    Hmm conspiracy theory on the Destroyermen Wiki. Fonzeppelin (Alexey Shiro on these discussions)wrote the following that I removed from the main page, “There are reasons to doubt that Anson is actually the agent of New United States; he may actually represent the different power. A lot of information, provided by him, was actually only partially true. For example, he persuaded Fred and Kari that the New United States are in open war with Dominion and ready to strike the Dominion Atlantic coast – while the actual relation between NUS and Dom’s were more like the state of prolonged cold war, and no operation against Dominion was even planned by NUS. As a result of such misinformation, the Alliance fleet was drawn into the open battle with Dominion Atlantic Fleet, and suffered terrible losses – actually for nothing.”

    I wrote the following, “We learn in Blood in the Water that his report was received by the powers that be in the New United States and disseminated to military leaders like Commodore (?) Semmes.

    See Article and Talk here:

    http://destroyermen.wikia.com/wiki/Samuel_Anson

    What are YOUR thoughts?

    Reply
    1. By donald johnson on

      The state of war is a cold war between the two but as we all know as far as the soldiers in the field are concerned it is always a hot war so they do things and say things as if it were a hot war. This is what my feeling towards what Samuel Anson said. As far as the navy not having heard of him that could not be considered unusual. Do not tell anyone you are spying or sabotaging and if the wrong person is caught then he can not squeal.

      Reply
      1. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Very perceptive. Hmm. I don’t think I’m spoiling anything when I characterize it as a “luke-warm” war. They fight when they run into each other or get in each other’s way, but there are not necessarily any ongoing active operations.

        Hey! I’m back! Sorry I was out of contact, but there was NO signal where I was! I’m going to catch up on the hundred-odd posts I missed!

        Reply
        1. By donald johnson on

          The old ” another ship has disappeared, was there a storm or what” and of course the other side says “prove I did it”. It’s been that way for as long as people have been going to sea.

          Reply
  30. By Cody Campbell on

    Mr. Anderson,

    I enjoyed what you did with the clan names of the Shee-Ree tribe. Hopefully there is no Grik commander named Meken-Zee.

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      Having written stories myself the temptation to use ‘punny’ names is great. Had one character attend the ‘Marquis DeSaude School for Boys.’ Welcome aboard. and consider joining the Destroyermen Fan Association of Facebook, or goat’s ass an inside joke here what Facebook sounds like in French. Link:

      https://www.facebook.com/groups/566578383510306/

      Reply
      1. By Cody Campbell on

        Thanks for the tip.
        Not sure if this is a “spoiler”, but the names of several of the clans of the newly discovered Shee-Ree tribe of ‘Cats phonetically resemble the names of bands of the Comanche tribe. So, in addition to Apache ‘Cats, we now have Comanch ‘Cats. I wonder if the Texans in the Navy Clan will pick up on this?

        Reply
      2. By Charles Simpson on

        Spock, “Fascinating.” raises eyebrow.
        And the Comanche speak Shoshoni Tibow!

        Reply
    1. By Taylor Anderson on

      Very, very nice. Actually about perfect for my mental image of Muriname–sans spectacles! Ha! Remember, Kurokawa has a pretty round face and his eyes slightly bulge all the time–even when he isn’t raving! Still quite amazing, and very “period” feel to the portrait.

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Thank you!

        Yeah, I forgot about the eyes, must admit!

        Reply
  31. By Justin on

    Before I forget – can I just express how glad I am that Miyata didn’t succumb to Black Dude Dies First?

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      Hm, he is “yellow” in therms of 1940s racial classification. But I see the point)

      Reply
      1. By Kingfishercritic on

        I’m glad to hear it as Miyata is one of those characters who intrigue me.

        Reply
  32. By Alexey Shiro on

    Hm! Small, but pretty interesting technological detail – in 1940, France have prototype glide bombs in comission. They were standard 50-kg bombs, fitted with wings and gyroscopic autopilot kit. They came a few days too late to be used operationally, and it seems that french military destroyed all prototyped and data to prevent Germans from obtaining it, but still this was pretty interesting work!

    Could the League have something like that?

    Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        My source exactly.

        P.S. They where guided – they have gyro to stabilize on course.

        Reply
  33. By Alexey Shiro on

    What would be REALLY interesting to see, is “Kurokawa meet Adar&Sandra”. Must point out, that previously Kurokawa NEVER met or contacted any Alliance representatives of high level.

    It’s quite interesting, how this could turn out. Adar is relatively skilled diplomat: he may be pretty well able to play on Kurokawa’s paranoidal tendences. I doubt that Adar would be able to manipulate Kurokawa, but to direct him to start to doubt the League (and possibli provoke Kurokawa-League conflict) – perfectly.

    Reply
    1. By Arland on

      First time poster….

      One wonders: Can it be that single shot fired by Sandra into Kurokawa’s head will do much more for the Union then carriers and planes. He holds it all by the force of his personality and fear he inspires.

      Reply
      1. Taylor AndersonBy Taylor Anderson (Post author) on

        Welcome aboard, Arland! You have a good point, but when have I ever thrown in such a convenient plot device (the 1908 .380) and had it used in an obvious way? :)

        Reply
        1. By Arland on

          Thank you. It will be rather wastefull to have such a good villain killed so fast. I don’t envy Sandra’s and even more so Diania’s predicament.

          Reply
      2. By Alexey Shiro on

        Hello, Arland! Welcome!

        //One wonders: Can it be that single shot fired by Sandra into Kurokawa’s head will do much more for the Union then carriers and planes. He holds it all by the force of his personality and fear he inspires.//

        I really doubt that Kurokawa would be so opinionated to allow himself to talk with Sandra without her being searched first. Of course, not counting the possibility of inside work…

        Reply
        1. By Charles Simpson on

          But what if Kurokawa visits her in her cell secure in the false knowledge she is unarmed? (Evil laugh] 😉

          @ Taylor “… but when have I ever thrown in such a convenient plot device (the 1908 .380) and had it used in an obvious way? :)” Hmm, resurrecting King Scott comes close, LOL. But then authors always have God like powers in their works 😉

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            As I mentioed before –

            “not counting the possibility of inside work…”

            – and frankly, I doubt about the “cell”. She is a pretty valuable POW, after all. Especially for the Kurokawa.

  34. By Alexey Shiro on

    Hm! I wonder: we have admiral Laborde in charge of “Savoie”. Is he the League’s origin World analogue of real-world admiral (pioneer of french naval aviation, and one who scuttle french fleet in Tulon) Jean de Laborde? If so, this is a first time that real-world significant figure actively used in novels…

    Reply
  35. By David DuBois on

    Here’s a question that I’ve wondered about several times, and I’m sure I’m the only one that would even think about this, but I’m throwing it out there anyway. Some people know that Douglas MacArthur was probably insane. Those that knew him the longest said so in writing, such as four star Admiral Thomas C. Hart, Commander of the Asiatic Fleet. Hart had known MacArthur since MacArthur was teenager, and since Hart outranked MacArthur and was senior to him, he was one of the few people to address him by his first name. MacArthur didn’t even allow his wife to call him Douglas. I know Taylor has studied the early days of WW2, he may have come across these reference, and there are lots and lots of examples of his insanity in the records.

    Since the crews of USS Walker and Mahan (and others) have left MacArthur far behind, did his insanity play any part in having an insane character such as Kurokawa?

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      Er… I’m not sure I understood your question right: you mean that Kurokawa’s character was partially inspired by MacArthur’s?

      Reply
    2. By Charles Simpson on

      It is possible their isolation, MccArther in the Philippians and Kurokawa in the Destroyermen’s world caused them to go insane. Both were probably egocentric control freaks prior to the war, type A personalities who rose to the top. MacArthur’s actions against the Bonus Marchers lead to his “exile” from the United States. Kurokawa had the Storm. Of the two Kurokawa was probably closer to his country’s norm behaviorally, MacArthur was considered an “odd duck.”

      Reply
      1. By David DuBois on

        MacArthur was “encouraged” to go to the Philippines in 1935 because FDR considered him to be one of the two most dangerous men in the country, the other being Huey Long. There was a very good chance that either of these two men could have become a dictator in this country. That was why MacArthur was given control of the southwest portion of the Pacific War, while many historians agree that Nimitz’s path to Japan was probably the quickest route to end the war. Two generals under MacArthur were the architects of battles that MacArthur took credit for. Generals Krueger and Eichelberger won the war in the southwest Pacific despite MacArthur’s portrayal that he won the war single handedly, rather like Kurokawa.

        That said, yes, they were both complete control freaks, and had narcissistic personality disorder, which is why I wondered if Taylor purposely modeled Kurokawa after MacArthur or if Kurokawa’s insanity was just a happy accident.

        Reply
      1. By David DuBois on

        One of my favorite people during WW2 in the Pacific was Orde Wingate. Tactically brilliant, but he did have a penchant for coming to staff meetings completely naked while eating a raw onion. He also favored wearing a large alarm clock around his neck, but no way was he insane like Kurokawa.

        Among the Japanese, there was Shumei Okawa, who was tried as a war criminal, but most people think he was only pretending to be insane to escape prosecution.

        Many of the Japanese officers ordered the wholesale slaughter of civilians, POWs and anyone else in their way. They ordered the machine gunning of American survivors in the water. Masanobu Tsuji was in charge of the Bataan Death March and ordered the killing of as many POWs as possible.

        It’s a hard list to come up with, there were so many crazy people during that time frame, on both sides. Many officers rose to high rank strictly because they have narcissistic tendencies.

        Reply
      2. By Justin on

        Huh. Kurokawa always seemed to be just a stereotypical Japanese officer from a Clint Eastwood movie.

        Crackpot dictator too – he’s got Stalin’s paranoia, Hitler’s temper tantrums/breakdowns and Idi Amin’s delusions of grandeur.

        Reply
      3. By donald johnson on

        My feeling as to what influenced kurokawa most and cursed him to go insane was having his beautiful ship sunk out from under him by Ready in a little tin bucket Destroyer( at least to his mindset).

        Reply
    3. By William Curry on

      MacArthur often referred to himself in the third person. He also had an extraordinary memory. He once said of FDR “That he wouldn’t tell the truth, if a lie would do”. Eisenhower asked about MacArthur said that he studied dramatics under him. MacArthur also said that Eisenhower was the best damn clerk that he ever had.

      Reply
      1. By David DuBois on

        Two things, MacArthur and Eisenhower hardly spoke after late 1939 when Eisenhower quit his job as MacArthur’s Chief of Staff and went back to Washington DC. Yes, there was no love lost between FDR and MacArthur, but MacArthur was insubordinate to most of his superiors throughout his entire career.

        Second, insanity was not stereotypical of Japanese naval officers, some (probably most) of them were very well trained, capable and obedient officers.

        Reply
  36. By Steve White on

    A social question about the Lemurians:

    What games do they play aboard their Homes? The Homes are huge but I can’t see them playing a field sport on them. So what do they play?

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      The only game mentioned in the books was borrowed from the Destroyermen, marbles. Baseball has caught on among the Lemurians too. There has been mention of a lemurian game similar to baseball. I speculate with printing cards could be produced with various card games like Harts and Canasta could be played by families at home at home. It is also possible the Destroyermen might have introduced board games like Backgammon, Checkers and Chess too. These were played aboard ship to pass the time. However with the need to support the war effort and heavy work schedules they may not have become common yet.

      Reply
      1. By Steve White on

        Sure, but what did they play BEFORE they met the Destroyermen? It wasn’t all work on a Home.

        Reply
      2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        You forget. They played a “hand” game similar to many universal ones in human cultures.

        Reply
        1. By Alexey Shiro on

          Hm… I suppose, it is possible that more advanced land-cultures of Jaava may have some analogue of chess (i.e. military-based table games)?

          Reply
          1. By Matthieu on

            Chess is highly related to our warfare culture. I would see them playing more something like the Go or a naval battle that takes into account the wind.

          2. By Alexey Shiro on

            Well, the Aryaal and B’mbaado seems to be relatively warlike. At least by lemurian measures.

        2. By Steve White on

          I did forget!

          Perhaps we’ll get to see the rules sometime? Or examples at play?

          Reply
  37. By Steve White on

    A question about language: the Lemurian language.

    As in, do they have a written language?

    I know their spoken language is complex, nuanced and appropriate for their society. But I don’t recall, even early on, if it was revealed that they had a written language. After all, the Cherokee didn’t have a written language until the 1800s.

    I see that the Lemurians are quick to learn English — needed for science, engineering and military uses. I get that. I know the Destroyermen learn Lemurian over time. But do they learn to write Lemurian?

    Reply
    1. By Alexey Shiro on

      As far as I recall – in first book, Naga specifically stated, that before the Ancient Tail-less Ones (I.e. proto-Imperials) appeared and taught the Latin to the Home Lemurians, they haven’t got any written language, and all significant data was transferred only mouth-to-mouth. The Scrolls were written only after the first human contact.

      I’m not sure about the land-based lemurians of Jaava.

      Reply
      1. Taylor AndersonBy Taylor Anderson (Post author) on

        It’s been long established that Lemurians have a strong oral tradition, (something reinforced in BITW), and the sky priests, at least, wrote in a form of Latin. (It wasn’t “sacred” and anyone could use it if they wanted, but few did). Records of barter indebtedness were kept on tablets, so one might assume merchants used limited Latin to record names and numbers. Many fairly advanced civilizations made do with less. At the same time, remember how excited Adar and others were to see written English? They immediately understood the advantages of a functioning, living, written language.

        Reply
        1. By Justin on

          If that’s the case, why didn’t just create their own writing? Written Latin and all its descendants use an alphabet; while the rules for Mi-Anakka haven’t been defined yet, it should be simple for a Sky Priest to read and write Lemurian words sound by sound.

          Reply
          1. By Alexey Shiro on

            //If that’s the case, why didn’t just create their own writing? //

            Well, they didn’t have enough time for this. Let’s recall, they have a written language – and very effective language, in all it’s perfection – for only about 300 years. They simply didn’t have time to form something like their own writing. And, frankly – I doubt that they have much need. Also we must consider the fact that the Latin for the Lemurians have special, near-religious place in society.

          2. By Charles Simpson on

            Languages do not use the same phonemes and the Latin alphabet was designed for Latin. Russian is written using the Greek alphabet with a few extra letters КАТЮШA (Katyusha) or Leonid Kharitonov (Леонид Харитонов)for example in Cyrilic and Roman letters. Phoneme the smallest unit of sound in a language, and each phoneme must have a letter or group of letters to represent it. In the above Ю is yo in Latin letters and Ш is sh sound in the Latin alphabet, и is the ee sound, н is an n, р is the letter r, etc. It could be worse see https://scontent-sea1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/13174083_859682294163784_7996396462951967342_n.jpg?oh=55a356077a0c7d064a844aa04d8be76d&oe=57AEF9DA the center section for Latin and Greek letter equivalents for the hieroglyphics translation below.

          3. By Generalstarwars333 on

            Yeah, and they aren’t always based on the individual sounds of words. Take chinese. Theirs is based on a character for every word. And also, how would they decide what particular scribbling means what sound?

          4. By Justin on

            //Take chinese. Theirs is based on a character for every word. And also, how would they decide what particular scribbling means what sound?//

            That’s why Pinyin’s for. The beauty of having an alphabet is that instead of having a thousand different iterations for every possible word/compound, you can just spell out individual sounds.

          5. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            I imagine–someday–some scholar will try to preserve the various Lemurian languages using phonetic spellings. Particularly as Lemurian/English/and various other languages become intermixed. This has already begun. (Often referenced, but rarely shown, since doing so would likely REALLY drag the story down.) Notice a lot of Lemurian characters speak very “proper” English now? Whis doesn’t only symbolize their English skills, but the ability of other characters to understand their Lemurian. This is particularly the case when certain characters use fewer “aa” sounds for ordinary words–like “can’t.” Under stress, they might still use “caan’t,” but not often.

            (unless the copyeditor does a last minute global change to a previous usage. I have a lot of trouble with that–and it’s hard to blame them. Think about how many ways I spell “Captain.” Captain, Cap-tan, Cap-i-taan, Kapitan, Capitaine . . . to name a few.)

            Simply put, one way or another, when ‘Cats speak “proper” English in the story, it simply means they are wholly understandable, regardless what they are actually speaking. As time goes by, you may only notice blatantly weird spellings to symbolize ‘Cats who have very little English. Yet they are STILL understandable. That’s because their listener understands ‘Cat. Maybe I could’ve come up with a better way to do this, but of all the reviews I’ve read, this is ONE thing I’ve never seen anybody gripe about–so I guess it has worked . . .
            This is a very cool discussion thread, though. Very thought provoking. Who knew, for example, that Charles was such a linguistic expert? I never even heard of a phoneme before. (In Silva mode) “Ain’t that the stink critters give off when they’re pixel-ated?”

        2. By Steve White on

          So the choices would be to 1) adopt English or 2) like the Cherokees, come up with their own written language that fits the sounds of their oral language (per Charles, etc).

          Well I could see that, with a war going on, it’s choice #1. But once the war is over (and Courtney is publishing his memoirs), I could see a Cat or two thinking about how best to preserve their traditions, and deciding that a Lemurian-specific written language is a way to do that.

          Reply
          1. By Charles Simpson on

            I expect the first written Lemurian to use the Roman alphabet adding special letters for sounds English doesn’t have. Many Lemurians will learn English and it’s written form. A Lemurian syllabary will be invented by some Lemurian Sequoyah. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cherokee_syllabary
            for Cherokee letters used for this language.

            Another term for spoken language is Morphene the smallest set of phonemes to containg language. The ‘s’ sound is the smallest in English and has two meanings IE there are four Jims in my class vs that is Jim’s pencil, we difrentiate meaning ins spoken language by context in the written form by ‘s.

      2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

        Very good point, Alexey. The Aryaalans, B’mbaadans, B’taavans, etc. may have a totally different written language. Aryaalans and B’mbaadans, at least, are more advanced in some ways, particularly architecture. And it was established that they shunned Siska-ta, so even if they picked up a little Latin, it was not from her early scrolls. Yet they had a wealthy aristocracy, so must have some method of keeping books . . .

        Reply
        1. By Charles Simpson on

          Book keeping is the root of written language. The earliest inventories have simplified pics of thee item and a count. Phonetic writing comes later say a pic of a bee and a leaf to spell the word belief. Over time this morphs into simplified pics, Egyptian scripts, Babylonian cuneiform, Chinese characters etc. This devolves into the Alphabet where the pic is unimportant. For example the Egyptian word for water is nu represented by a wavy line eventually shortened to our letter N (Bet you did not know you were writing in Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphics brought to us through Phoenician 😉 .) I used to joke with a German friend that while German has mile long words English has mile long sentences, our inflections are extra words rather than adding phonemes and morphemes to root words of a highly inflected language.

          Reply
          1. By Steve White on

            I like to tease a German post-doc in our program about the Germans’ ability to create a new word simply by smashing two words together. She looked at me with mock seriousness, put out her hands and said, “but how else would you DO it?”

          2. Taylor AndersonsBy Taylor Andersons on

            Very true, Steve. Shoot, that’s what Silva does.

          3. By Charles Simpson on

            I edited my German friend’s stories for the Grantvile Gazette, but only the American characters leaving his authentic German use of English to add color and reality to his writing.

    2. By Matthieu on

      Another question on the topic: how does their langage work?

      1/ Latin is using declension, as Russian and German.
      2/ Latin based languages (Italian, French, spanish, Rumanian…) all share the same basic logic: NOUN + VERB + COMPLEMENT such as “the car is blue” or “la voiture est bleue”. At the same time they have some incredibly verbs (if you speak English only you just have “to do / dit / done” while I have to know 94 variations depending on the tense and to whom I speak.
      3/ English is a mix of German and latin based language. It’s grammar and spelling are easy (compared to other ones!) but pronunciation is really complicated.

      and we just don’t even take into account Africa, Native and Asian languages!

      ———————————–

      So the question is: what do they say?

      Is it a descriptive language such as “sea” “animal” “swim” for “the animal is swimming in the sea” where inflections give the meaning (as in Chinese)

      Is is a declension based one such as “sea-in” animal”-comlement” “swim” for “the animal is swimming in the sea”
      Is it a modern latin based one such as “animal” “swimming” “in sea”?

      Is it a mix with body language such as “animal” sea” (blink) “swimming” (blink blink)

      Do they use tenses? Do they use the same words depending on who they talk to (as in Japanese with the polite form).

      Do they have a specific accent? Is it related to words or to sense? For example in English you’ll put an accent on the word. In my language we never put an accent on the word. We put one to determine the meaning of the sentence. For me something like
      “you are going to schOOL” is a question
      “YOU ARE going to school” is a statement
      “YOU are going to SCHOOL” is surprise
      “To school you are going” is a Yoda

      (BTW that’s why French people often have a problem with accents as using one in each word is seen as very unpolite/undeducated/rude)

      Reply
      1. By Charles Simpson on

        Taylor has mentioned other non verbal Lemurian language clues in Lemurian, tail and ear position too. The blinks are however the most important, and I’m sure Stubby cusses out his marines well enough missing part of his tail.

        Reply
  38. By Charles Simpson on

    I’ve lost my marbles! In the early books mention of glass workers making marbles as a side venture, while discussion of baseball has continued in the series where have all the marble players gone?

    With paper making and printing new decks of cards are possible when are card games going to get a nod. I remember a quote from a WW 2 vet that war was moments of stark terror interspersed in long periods of boredom. Too much would make the books drag, but a little spice now and then, perhaps a letter home from a GI.

    Another thing missing is education, where are the Lemurain younglings learning English and reading ‘riting, and ‘rithmetic?

    Reply
    1. By Generalstarwars333 on

      Wow. You know, things like that get forgotten when there’s the more exciting “PEW PEW PEW”‘s to read about.

      Reply
      1. By Charles Simpson on

        True, but remember Silva singing “Catmokies have no tails” during the long voyage to New Britain? Like I said a little spice.

        Staa-wa shot his cat’s eye in to the circle knocking Kaa-ra-les’ last marble out of the circle shouting, “Well thaa-t’s aa-ll the maa-rbles!”

        Staa-wa drew a six completing his inside strait, and continued to bet shreudly, at the end shouting “Read ’em aa-nd weep!”
        Kaa-ra-les grinned, “Straa-it Flush!” gathering in the pot

        See not so hard to do.

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Wait, were they playing cards while playing marbles?

          Reply
          1. By Charles Simpson on

            Nah, to points in time one with marbles one with cards.

    2. By Steve White on

      As to education, there’s at least one tiny American girl who is going to need one. I don’t think Lt. Karen (Theimer) Letts is going to home-school the little one.

      And as the American destroyermen meet up with Impie girls, there are going to be more babies. So Baalkpan and probably Maa-ni-la will have “American Schools” in a few years.

      Reply
  39. By Alexey Shiro on

    Phew! I done this! I defend my PhD thesis!

    Horrah!

    Reply
    1. By Clifton Sutherland on

      Congratulations, Alexey, for holding firm against the onslaught of academic criticism!

      What is your thesis concerning, if I might ask?

      Reply
      1. By Alexey Shiro on

        Thanks!

        Well, the main question was the rate of cross-pollination in some triticale varieties in our climatic conditions. You see, the triticale have pretty good potential to became the main grain culture in Eastern Europe and Canada. It’s gave more yields than rye, and more resistant than wheat.

        Reply
        1. By Clifton Sutherland on

          That’s pretty neat! I suppose we can always use another staple crop, especially with the potential for resistant diseases and climate change mucking with everything.

          Reply
  40. By Generalstarwars333 on

    “By Charles Simpson on 22 March, 2016
    LMAO!!!!”

    Well. That must have been a painful experience. Laughing it off. Wow.

    Reply
  41. By Generalstarwars333 on

    “Gotta say it was poor Slerkja, slain along with countless of its Uul brethren in the battle for Grik city.”
    The seriousness of this conversation just curled up in a corner somewhere and died.

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      You’re too young to act like an old curmudgeon yet!

      Reply
      1. By Generalstarwars333 on

        One is never too young to state the obvious!

        Reply
  42. By Charles Simpson on

    He had the potential of being the Buckley of theANC’s PT fleet with the confidence of the palace raid behind him.

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      comment in reply to Justin’s “Not Chief Gray? Honestly, Laumer ceased to be plot-essential as soon as S-19 went down; I was surprised that it wasn’t Isak or Silva. It was pretty much a guarantee that somebody was going to bite it in the Palace Raid.” I kinda like Chief Jeek better than I did Chief Grey myself.

      Reply
  43. By Justin on

    And I still have the slanty-eyed avatar (muttered expletives)…

    Reply
    1. By Charles Simpson on

      Quit griping mine has three round eyes. Round eye is a known Oriental slur for a Caucasian.

      Reply
      1. By Justin on

        Huh, that’s a new one. All the Asian slurs I know address skin colour – except for “ang mo,” which is Hokkien for “red hair” (Dutchmen, apparently).

        Reply
    2. By Generalstarwars333 on

      Is there a way to change our avatars? I have two pics that I use: the winged hussar and fire stuff from Mount and Blade: With Fire and Sword, and an iconic picture from ksp of a probe with laythe directly infront of jool.

      Reply
  44. By Clifton Sutherland on

    Perhaps a character in the Republic, or someone over in the Dominion theater? It seems like things have been going sorta rosy there lately. The perfect oppertunity to kill a Shinya or Orrin Reddy or even some Lemurian characters.

    Reply
  45. By Charles Simpson on

    So who do you think gets knocked off in the next book, I’m thinking Lord Muln-Rolak so Captain Reddy can keep Hij Geerki.

    Reply
    1. By Generalstarwars333 on

      “So who do you think gets knocked off in the next book”

      (with slightly mentally challenged look on face, and in Patrick Star’s voice) Everyone DIES . The end.

      Reply
      1. By Charles Simpson on

        Taylor is writing # 12 now so all can’t die in # 11, General. While we a guessing will Cpt. Reddy have a son or a daughter in your opinion? Who was the most tragic death for you, mine was Irwin Laumer.

        Reply
        1. By Generalstarwars333 on

          Gray without a doubt. That one actually had me tear up a little bit. The fact that Chief Gray had DIED … I honestly doubt anyone was ready for that, or thought it was even possible.

          Reply
        2. By Justin on

          Not Chief Gray? Honestly, Laumer ceased to be plot-essential as soon as S-19 went down; I was surprised that it wasn’t Isak or Silva. It was pretty much a guarantee that somebody was going to bite it in the Palace Raid.

          Reply
          1. By Clifton Sutherland on

            Gotta say it was poor Slerkja, slain along with countless of its Uul brethren in the battle for Grik city.

            #Grikarepeopletoo #Uullivesmatter

        3. By Logan Meyers on

          Nakja-mur’s death got me the hardest actually, it just tore me up as he watched the galla burn and his city exploding. Man that really turned on the water works for me.

          Reply
    2. By Andrew on

      If they kill off Shinya, Blas, Orrin, or Juan then I quit this series.

      Reply
      1. By Paul Nunes on

        NO, No… I am ok with killing off Juan, Lawrence, and Petey for that matter… Need some new comic relief characters.

        Reply

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